Growing a business can be daunting and may lead to some business owners procrastinating around growth, feeling it’s just too difficult and too much to take on. But what opportunities are they missing? Mike Lloyd, managing partner of the Swindon office of chartered accountants and business advisors Haines Watts, looks at the options.
Many decisions do need to be made around:
- Structuring the business
- Funding for growth
- Building the right team
- Letting go of the reins
When we talk to business owners who are ready to grow, we discuss all of these areas so they feel confident of our expertise helping them achieve their growth goals.
A good place to start is this key question:
What are your business growth options?
There are several to consider and, as a business owner, you need to really think through the best route for you.
- Organic growth – Your existing business may have plenty of potential to grow long-term in its present form. A sound business and marketing plan will help.
- Merger & acquisition – Buying a business can be a great way to expand geographically, tap into new customers or bolt on additional products. However, you still need a sound business and marketing plan.
- Growing overseas – Exporting can offer massive growth potential. However, there are also many pitfalls with exporting which are easy to miss without adequate research.
- Diversification – New products, services or markets not only offer growth opportunities but may mean you qualify for a grant or for research & development tax credits. R&D is not just about people in white coats, it’s about innovation.
Once you’ve considered how you want to grow. Your next question might be:
What might I need to grow my business?
Possibly some or all of these might come into play:
- Finance – Sourcing, applying for and getting the right deal can be tricky, so take advice around money. This might be about funding for acquisition or funding for additional equipment, for example.
- Premises – It’s critical you have room for business growth. If not, take advice on funding new premises and also for the most tax efficient property purchase or leasing agreements.
- Outsourcing – This can be difficult if you are not used to delegating to third parties. However outsourcing key functions such as payroll, IT or certain finance functions may free up valuable resources for growth.
- Tax planning & restructuring – Planning or restructuring for maximum tax efficiency can preserve valuable cash to fund growth. It’s important to plan for growth and to not pay unnecessary tax as a result of your plan.