Author: Shannon Lowther

  There’s no denying it, we’re living through a period of extraordinary uncertainty. This state of affairs has many business owners thinking about how their businesses will be affected. In an earlier article that can be found here, I outlined factors behind today’s lower company valuations (generally speaking). Despite lower values and business challenges, there’s a silver lining for business owners: an opportunity for estate and gift tax planning. For business owners who are considering an ownership transfer to the next generation...

The devastating health, social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to dominate our lives. Even a casual observer of the stock markets has witnessed the extreme volatility and generally lower public company valuations since February’s peak. While share prices for private companies are not subject to daily judgment by investors, private company values will generally follow the recent public company trend: lower. COVID-19 has impacted businesses and industries in different ways, much as the virus infects people in different...

The holiday season has past us again, and after family visits and turkey dinners, it’s time to be reflecting on last year’s performance and how to maintain or improve profitability. 2020 brings more challenges to Californian business owners: Minimum wage increases; New privacy laws for businesses operating in California; Assembly Bill 5: Status as Employee or Independent Contractor; and Employment Law changes covering such things as: Leave and Benefits; Discrimination and Harassment and Occupational Safety and Reporting. As we asked last...

Dear readers, Today's post features an article by Alina Niculita, CFA, ASA. I was about to write a post on the same topic, and she summed it up perfectly. Click here for Alina's other articles. This post first appeared in the Portland Business Journal on July 12th, 2019. Myths and truths about business valuation While most people understand real estate appraisal, the same cannot be said about business appraisal or business valuation. Real estate appraisal makes sense because it puts a price on houses...

Did you know that 70% of all businesses do not sell? Only about 30% of family businesses get handed down and less than 50% of businesses with revenues between $10 and $50 million in revenues sell. These extraordinary numbers should be a wakeup call to business owners.   Reasons Businesses Don't Sell There are many reasons why businesses do not sell and common ones include: • It’s easier for the owner to liquidate the assets of the business rather than try to sell a...

The holiday season is upon us again, and in between family visits and turkey dinners, we may be reflecting on this year’s performance, how to improve profits and thinking what 2019 may look like. Most large corporations have been engaged in year-end planning and review activities, so why not you? It’s a good time to ask yourself, how is this year’s performance against your budget for the year. If you didn’t build a budget for 2018, then how do you measure...

For many business owners, the majority of their net worth sits in the value of their business, and for many there is no concrete exit strategy. It is common for business owners to view their business primarily as an income source (perhaps for family members as well as themselves), a job, or an “ATM,” rather than what it really is: an investment, and probably their most valuable asset. The same business owners may spend time managing their investment portfolios and/or...