My name is Sam Beckford. My wife and I have University Business Degrees and arts backgrounds. We started our studios from scratch in 1995 and built them to 3 locations with 3,623 students. I have been helping other studio owners improve their businesses since 1999. Over 2000 studio owners have attended my events. In the last 17 years have seen and helped a lot of studio owners sell and retire from their studios. I have seen some great sales with seamless transitions.
There are some crucial things that can ensure your studio is sold for top value with a great future for your students, staff and new owner. Not knowing these details can literally lose you a fortune and a lifetime of effort that you deserve to be paid for. You have poured your life into your studio. You deserve to be well rewarded financially and have your artistic legacy live on.
If you are planning to sell your studio soon you have both a big opportunity and a big potential problem. According to INC. Magazine, the leading small business publication over 70% of small businesses listed for sale can’t be sold. The owner is either force to continue running the business or the business is just shut down.
For the 30% of small business that are sold, a shocking amount of them have major problems. The original owner usually has to finance the purchase over a period of several years. The new owner may change too many things, run the business poorly and lose customers. This often results in the new owner not being able to make the payments and either bankrupting the business or handing back a badly damaged business to the original owner. The original owner who wanted to stop working now has to jump back in and work even harder to try to preserve a drastically reduced amount of what they thought would be their retirement savings. It can get even uglier if lawsuits get involved.
Add to that the detrimental effects to your reputation, your students, families and staff who you wanted to be in good hands.
Unfortunately a lot of these situations occur when business owners use conventional methods to selling. By doing the commonly accepted way of how to do things they often get a disastrous result. They hire a business broker, they get advice from their accountant on pricing, valuation and financing and they list their studio in local or national publications and websites. Even the common good advice can get you bad results.
Here’s the good news. There are unconventional ways to try to sell and structure your studio sale. I have pioneered a few strategies which can work perfectly for a studio sale. I have nothing against business brokers or accountants, but they would never give you these ideas. These ideas are perfect for our studio industry where the most motivated buyers and best candidates to continue running your studio may be young and have very little money. I asked a lawyer and a financial planner for their opinion on my strategies and they agree that they could be a very good option for a studio sale if done properly.
The studio industry is a very emotional industry. We are not like cold, fact based industries where number crunchers and corporate decisions dictate success and failure. If you know and understand how to work with those emotions they can actually help your studio sale and future success not hurt it.
We will also discuss more conventional options so you can evaluate the best approach to take in your situation. I will give you multiple options and assist you through this financial and emotional major decision for your business and life.
Not knowing this information could cost you $50,000, $100,000 or even more in lost opportunity. In some cases it could make the difference between selling for a decent payout and just shutting down with zero. You didn’t build your business all these years to have it not survive. You want your artistic legacy and good reputation in the community to continue on.
Don’t make one of the biggest decisions of your life without knowing all of your options. There is no second chance to fix a bad studio sale and transition.
One of my mentors once told me: you don’t have to do everything your find out, but you should find out everything you can do. You don’t want to make a big decision and kick yourself later because you missed a better option you didn’t even know existed.
I built my home and a small conference center on a beautiful 3 acre waterfront property 45 minutes from downtown Vancouver. I host my own business events there and occasionally let family and friends do weddings and parties. I call my facility Creators Landing. Accommodations are not included in the workshop fee, but we have a corporate discount rate at a Holiday Inn 10 minutes from the conference center. The hotel is located next to one for our properties ( property #4 - the red 13,000 square foot building). There will be a shuttle that picks up and drops you off each day between the Holiday Inn and the conference center. The nearest airports to fly into are Vancouver International (YVR) and Abbotsford International (YXX) if flying on Westjet airlines within Canada. If you are attending from the USA you will require a passport to travel to Canada.
Yes. Ideally the more time you have to plan a studio sale and transition the better, but these strategies and financing options can be used even if you need to sell quickly.
Every area and studio is unique, but the concepts I will discuss are universal. As long as you believe that your studio has financial value and have you the desire to sell, you can use these concepts. I will show you how to do the best with what you have, where you are.
Yes. We will talk about finding good candidates but we will also talk about how to get paid out when you have a buyer. The financing options alone could be worth the trip for you. It also never hurts to learn to develop a back-up plan in case the situation changes with your potential future buyer. Having multiple offers is never a bad position to be in.
Yes. This workshop is primarily about selling the studio business but I will talk about specifics with people who own their real estate too. I own the 3 buildings we run our studio from and I do a lot of consulting about real estate. I am very familiar with being a landlord, leases, tenants and real estate ownership structures.
Yes. I am very busy but I do have an optional structured program to where I can give you ongoing advice to help your sale and transition. I only take clients in this program after they have attended my one day training so we are both on the same page of what the goals, strategies and outcomes are. There are limited spaces in this program and I only discuss the details of it at the workshop.
You can call me at 1-800-752-1219. I am very busy but if you are serious and have specific questions my assistant will get a message to me and I will call you back. This seminar may be a big step or even a “leap of faith” for you so I want to make sure you get all your questions answered.
The one day small group workshop runs 9AM -5PM at my waterfront coaching center In Vancouver Canada. The fee is $997 for you and one complimentary guest attendee. Please take a spouse, family member or business associate. I recommend that you DO NOT take a current teacher or potential buyer as your guest. The topics are very sensitive and can be awkward if there is a conflict of interest in what you or others want to discuss. You can take financial information on your business or choose to keep it private. There is no requirement to discuss or disclose anything you are not comfortable talking about. Lunch, coffee, tea, beverages and snacks are included.
Since I held my first live workshop in July 2000, I have always offered a 100% money back guarantee on my events. If you attend my workshop and by the lunch break you don’t think the information is already worth far more than the fee, simply tell any of my staff, turn in your workbook, leave and we will refund 100% of your workshop fee. You can even stay for lunch to show there are no hard feelings. This way you can be confident that you will be getting valuable information. There is no way I could have run events profitably for 16 years with this guarantee if I could not deliver valuable content.
Unfortunately our seminar and advice is not an open invitation to every studio. In certain areas of North America we have been retained as studio business consultants on an exclusive basis. If we are already working with a studio on an exclusive basis in your area, we will not be able to work with your studio. I appreciate your understanding and respecting our policy.