The road to selling a small to medium enterprise in Geelong was tough well before the global pandemic of 2020 and the need to keep businesses in the area strong is greater than ever.
Geelong Strong, owned by Business Acquisitions International, buys good quality, profitable businesses at fair prices, with the aim of increasing employment in the region.
Chief executive Amanda Bennetts says the best way to promote employment is to provide jobs in strong, robust growing businesses.
“The odds were against [SME’s] prior to 2020 with as many as 90 per cent of businesses never selling,” Amanda says.
“The ones that do, usually go to a family member or are turning over $50million a year and sell to investors.
“This reality is seen in the hundreds of thousands of businesses owned by baby boomers who are looking to retire, but there just isn’t enough cashed up people out there to buy their business.
“With the COVID-19 hit to the economy, many of those who would have taken the punt to buy a SME are now waiting or too scared.”
Amanda, who is the founder of Business Acquisitions International, is no stranger to developing and growing businesses across the globe as the director of The CEO Institute Geelong, headed up a world leading fashion brand of boots and a sourcing company based in China.
“If your business is suffering, there are many free education options and support provided by the local council and the tax department,” she says.
“And now a team in Geelong is also stepping up to help local SMEs by buying their business.
“Not only do we buy businesses that are profitable, we invest heavily in technology, upgrading skills, getting top level knowledge and networks to support the businesses through the highs and lows of the current volatile economy with an aim to grow.”
Amanda says as a result of an unstable economy and lack of confident buyers, business owners have no choice but to work harder, longer and hope they can survive the next few years, put the business on the market or close down.
“All this is happening right down the street from where we live,” she says.
“The most alarming factors affect us all here in Geelong.
“When a local SME closes we all lose.
“The only way to keep Geelong Strong is to have strong thriving businesses that can weather the storms that are ahead of us.”