Small Businesses Find it Tough to Sell
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From the Wall Street Journal:
"Small-business owners banking on a big payoff when they sell their establishments may have to settle for a lot less than planned.
A combination of tight credit, skittish buyers and business owners unwilling to sell at rock-bottom prices—factors similarly affecting home sellers—has left the small-business marketplace at a standstill.
David Wetzel says he spent two years trying to sell his business, Dorset Hardware, a Ventnor City, N.J., shop he's owned since 1993. He's now liquidating the business and expects to earn only about a third of his asking price. "I had some very close leads who wanted to buy, but they could just not get the financing," says Mr. Wetzel, who is 64 years old.
Just 1,117 small businesses were sold in the U.S. in the third quarter, the same number as in the year-earlier period, reports BizBuySell.com, an online marketplace for small-business acquisitions in San Francisco. By contrast, there were 1,462 small businesses sold in the third quarter of 2008, according to BizBuySell. (BizBuySell.com licenses some of its data to The Wall Street Journal.)"