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Buying and selling a business | Brighton Solicitors

Buying and Selling a Business

Our very practical approach can make a real difference.

Sellers and Buyers each have their own objectives.  Sellers want to receive the sale price in full with as few strings attached as possible. Buyers want to identify risks and to address this through the legal process.  Using our extensive experience, we aim to protect you whether you are buying or selling.

It’s important to involve us as early as possible – our Business and Commercial team are based in our Brighton office.

We will advise on proposed terms and we can be involved in initial negotiations.  Above all, we will help you to identify specific issues which should be taken into account when agreeing terms ‘subject to contract’.

Why not take a look at our 5 part video series on Buying and Selling a Company.

For further information or to make an appointment, please contact Tim Smith on 01273 384004 or by email

Acting for Buyers

The business or company you are planning to buy may have potential, but it could also have problems, and you won’t want to ‘buy a pup’.

If we are acting for you as a Buyer, our objective is to protect you from existing risks in the business, particularly risks you are not already aware of.  We will also work closely with your Accountants who will advise on key aspects of the acquisition including tax and valuation.

We help you to find out more about what you are buying;

  • Premises and lease terms
  • Trading and financial position
  • Third party rights over business assets
  • Intellectual property
  • Contracts and disputes

…and a range of other issues which could seriously affect the value of what you are buying.

Is there a major problem ahead which the Seller knows about but which hasn’t yet had an impact on the business?

This process is often referred to as Due Diligence – we will discuss with you potential risks so that our enquiries address issues that you have identified.

But what if information provided by the Seller is not accurate, or if something crucial is left out?

We prepare the Acquisition Agreement specifically to try to protect you from these risks.  We include ‘warranties’ to help you to recover loss from the Seller after the sale if anything significant can be traced back to a failure by the Seller to be completely frank with you.

And what if the Seller could set up in competition with you or poach key clients, suppliers or staff?

Don’t worry, we will try to cover that and a whole range of other risks too.

Acting for Sellers

Retiring?  Moving on?  A strategic decision to sell part of your business?

Whatever your reason for selling, we think you will probably agree with our overriding objective when we act for a Seller:  “To get the full sale price into your bank account with as little risk as possible of any comeback”.

But what if the Buyer wants to pay in instalments?

Or if the price is based on a formula which involves a final payment after completion?

After the sale, how can you be sure that the Buyer will make those future payments to you?

Our job is to help you obtain good security to cover this.

And what if the Buyer’s solicitors produce a contract which includes warranties – maybe only a page of them, but we have often seen over 50 pages!  How can you protect yourself against the Buyer recovering all or part of the sale price (or even more) from you after completion?

We stick to our overriding objective:  our aim is to protect you as much as we possibly can.

For further information or to make an appointment, please contact;
Tim Smith on 01273 384004 or by email

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