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Step 19 – Investment Planning

Succession Planning

Step 19 – Investment Planning

By , October 20, 2023

You’ve made it. You’ve sold your business, pocketed that hard-earned check, and now you’re faced with a new reality. As a business owner, you were accustomed to the ebb and flow of finances, investing in your business when needed and reaping the benefits when possible. But post-exit, this dynamic undergoes a seismic shift. You’re no longer pouring money into your business, and it won’t be generating income for you either. So, where does your revenue come from now? This is where ongoing investment planning steps in, and it’s vital.

Understanding the New Reality

The first thing to recognize is that for the first time, your primary source of income will be your investments. While this is perfectly feasible, it necessitates a shift in mindset and a solid strategy. Previously, the business provided; now, your investments will.

Prolonged Life Expectancy and Increased Spending

Life expectancies have dramatically risen, presenting a unique financial challenge. You may live 20 to 30 years after retiring, meaning you need your finances to last longer than ever. Moreover, post-retirement, having more free time often translates to more spending. Travel, hobbies, and adventures become part of your routine, potentially costing more than your working days.

This brings us back to the importance of setting the right financial goals. Meticulous financial planning ensures you know exactly what you need to fund your retirement. How much do you need from the sale of your business, combined with other assets, to sustain your desired lifestyle?

Seek Professional Guidance

Investment planning at this stage is not a do-it-yourself project. It requires expert guidance. A financial advisor can help you chart a course based on your goals, debt situation, desired lifestyle, and other critical factors. They can help you select appropriate investments and design a strategy that aligns with your vision.

In essence, this episode underscores the shift from preparing for the exit to navigating life after the sale. Your wealth, once anchored in your business, now sails through the seas of investment. Planning for these waters requires careful attention and the right guidance to ensure you continue to ‘exit like a boss’ even after the sale is complete.

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Craig West

Craig West

Executive Chairman | Succession Plus

Craig West is a strategic accountant with over 20 years of experience advising business owners. His background as a CPA in public practice has provided invaluable experience in the key issues of concern to business owners.

In March 2014, Craig was appointed Executive Chairman of the SME Association of Australia, Australia’s largest small business organisation representing over 300,000 business owners.

In October 2014, he was awarded the Exit Planner of the Year at the Exit Planning Institute Annual Conference in Texas, USA, due to his innovative development of an exit planning process to help business owners maximise business value and achieve a successful exit.

Craig’s proprietary structure - a Peak Performance Trust - has won the Australia-wide award for the Employee Share Ownership Plan of the year twice in four years.

In November 2018, Craig launched SME Experts in partnership with Mark Bouris’ Mentored on Podcast One and quickly grew the monthly podcast audience to over 26,500 downloads; in October 2019, he released a new podcast focused on medium-sized businesses - Mid-Market Matters.

In July 2021, Craig joined the NSW Committee for STEP (Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners) – focusing on advising families across generations.

Craig has also launched a SaaS platform, Capitaliz (which captures the 21-step process), to assist other advisers internationally deliver advisory services at scale.

In November 2021, Craig was appointed Executive Chairman of NSW Leaders, a business mentoring group for leading NSW businesses.

In July 2022, Craig West received the award of Doctor of Business Administration for his research thesis titled “Examination of the key factors driving business exit options in Australian Small and Medium Enterprises.”

Craig is passionate about encouraging business owners to think strategically, maximise the value of their business and achieve a successful exit.

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