Business Acquisitions: Shotgun or Rifle Approach?

One of the enjoyable aspects of business brokerage is meeting with business buyers. Some are experienced, most are green and would be considered first-time buyers. Typical first-time buyers meet with us to discuss the process and ascertain whether they can financially put a deal together. One of the most intriguing parts of our discussions with first-time buyers relates to what kind of business they are looking to purchase. When asked what kind of business they would like to buy, the vast majority of response is “well, just tell me what you have and I’ll let you know if I’m interested”. This approach certainly works, yet there is another way to zero in on the right business.

Buyer Searches

With the right technology you can find the business you really want, rather than choosing from the current list of inventories. We have a database network that allows us to use a rifle approach to put the crosshairs on the business that is right for you. The technology allows you to fine tune your search with the following factors:

By Industry

Businesses are categorized by SIC Codes (Standard Industry Classification Codes). There are general categories to choose from like manufacturing, distribution, retail, restaurants etc. Within the general categories are literally hundreds of sub-classifications. Under manufacturing you may be interested in everything from nuts and bolts to cabinets and countertops. The selection is huge. Take a look at this website for SIC Codes –

By Size

This generally means by revenue or level of profit. Typically, when you choose the size of business you are limiting in scope your interest by the amount of capital you bring to the table and the financing you qualify for. The selection of specific businesses under the general classification codes may help stimulate ideas about which businesses are a good match for you.

By Geography

Are you only interested in a Wasatch front based business, or are you looking for one in Tucson, Arizona? The technology allows us to look at any area in the country by zip code.

Selecting from our current inventory of businesses (shotgun approach) may work just fine for you. If not, consider zeroing in (rifle approach) by choosing the industry, size and geography that really makes sense to you, and find a business that is a great fit. The only thing more enjoyable than meeting with buyers looking for businesses, is finding one that becomes a match.


-Bradley G. Marlor MBA, M&AMI, CBI is a Managing Partner at Utah Business Consultants and a Certified Business Intermediary. Utah Business Consultants is a full-service Business Brokerage and Valuation firm

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