General Business Articles Archive - South Florida Business Broker Russell Cohen

Business Broker Russell Cohen


General Business Articles Archive

Important Government Websites

The following is a list of useful phone numbers and web site addresses (URL’s) to aid you: Internal Revenue Service Contact the IRS regarding Employer’s Identification Number (EIN) (use form SS-4 to apply for EIN), income taxes, withholding from employee compensation and federal unemployment taxes. Main IRS Website IRS "Tax Information for Businesses" web page IRS "Download Forms and Publications" web page You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to download forms. 1-800-829-1040 1-800-829-3676 1-770-455-2360 954-423-7623 Florida Department of State Contact the Florida Department of State, Division of Corporations for incorporation and fictitious name registration questions. Florida Division of Corporations web site Secretary of State "Download Forms" web page Download corporate filing and fictitious name registration forms. You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to download forms. 1-850-488-9000 Florida Department of Revenue Contact the Florida Department of Revenue regarding sales and use tax, state intangible tax and corporate tax questions. Coral Springs Service Center (for all locations North of Broward Blvd) 3111 N University Dr #504 Coral Springs, FL Hollywood Service Center (for all locations South of Broward Blvd) 6565 Taft St #400 Hollywood, FL 33024 Department of Revenue web site Department of Revenue "Download Forms" web page 1-850-488-9750 1-800-488-6800 954-346-3000 954-967-1000 954-967-1821 Florida Department of Commerce Division of Labor, Bureau of Unemployment Compensation Contact the Bureau of Unemployment Compensation for all matters related to the State unemployment insurance. Fort Lauderdale Office: 2530 W Oakland Park Blvd Bureau of Unemployment Compensation "Home Page" 954-667-5700 Division of Workers’ Compensation Contact the Division of Workers’ Compensation to get information on Workers’ Compensation Insurance. Division of Workers’ Compensation "Home Page" 1-850-921-6966... read more

Stock versus Asset Acquisitions

One Should always consult there accountant on these matters, however, from a lenders standpoint both forms of sales are acceptable. As a buyer, you should be aware that in a stock sale, you may be resposible for prior sins of the corporation you are buying. Your attorney can assist with language, rights of offset against seller notes and other defenses against some of these risks. Also, under the stock sale, assets are valued based on their book value, which is often less than the replacement or market value. A separate appraisal may be rquired to address this discrepancy in value as a means to provide the maximum financing. In an asset sale, many of our lenders will use the asset values as agreed to between buyer and seller, regardless of their book value, which negates the requirement of a costly appraisal Information was provided by Simple... read more

How & Where to obtain an Occupational License in Broward County?

OCCUPATIONAL LICENSES The following table will give you information where to obtain your occupational licenses in Broward County. The license must be from the city where the business is located. Call the city first to make certain the address is actually within the boundaries of that city. This will save you valuable time. First you get a license from the city, then from the County. Licenses are valid for one year. The generally expire on September 30th. If you live in unincorporated Broward County, you need only obtain a Broward County occupational license. Most cities allow home based business with some restrictions such as: No clients/customers are allowed to come to your home No employees No shipping and receiving of goods Do not use the home address in any advertising materials No signs on building Check with your city for the exact restrictions that apply. Broward County 115 S Andrews Ave, Ft. Lauderdale 954-765-4697 Coconut Creek 4800 W Copans Rd 954-973-6752 Cooper City 9090 SW 90th Pl 954-434-4300 Ext 237 Coral Springs 2801 Coral Springs Dr 954-346-1782 Dania Beach 100 W Dania Beach Blvd 954-924-3644 Davie 6591 Orange Dr 954-797-1112 Deerfield Beach 150 NE 2nd Ave 954-480-4333 Fort Lauderdale 300 NE 1st Ave 954-828-5191 Ext 3 Hallandale 400 S Federal Hwy 954-457-1340 Hillsboro Beach Does not issue occupational licenses. City has only residential districts! Hollywood 2600 Hollywood Blvd Room 103 954-921-3225 Lauderdale by the Sea 4501 Ocean Dr 954-776-0576 Lauderdale Lakes 4300 NW 36th St (Trailer in Parking lot) 954-535-2753 Lauderhill 2000 NW 55th Ave 954-717-1510 read more

The Lease- Buyers and Sellers Beware!

The lease is an important issue and, in many cases, a major issue. Whether you are buying or selling a business, it’s important to understand that, if the real estate is not included, the lease is a critical lement of the sale process. There are three ways the transfer of the lease can be handled: A new lease- A new lease can be entered into buy the lessor and the buyer. A sub-lease- This can be negotiated between the seller and the buyer. In a sub-lease, the seller of the business becomes the landlord. The exsisting landlordmust always approve the sublease. The Assignment of the Lease- This is the most common method of transferring the lease. The seller simply assigns the existing lease to the buyer. The buyer assumes responsibility fot the lease, and in most cases, the landlord must approve the assignment. Sellers should be aware that, in most cases, they are still responsible for the terms of the lease. Sellers should take a look at the lease on their business and ask themselves the following questions: Is the lease long enough and the rent low enough to make the business attractive to a potential buyer? Is the rent consistent with similar businesses in the area? Are there any terms or conditions of the lease that might be unfavorable in the eyes of a potential buyer? Are you on good terms with the landlord- and can the lease be transferred without any hitches? Your business broker is a good source to review the lease and its terms from a business sale perspective. (This information was taken from the... read more

Women Business Owners: Coming On Strong

If there were any doubt that women owners are an ever-growing force on the independent business scene, new studies of leading female entrepreneurs around the world supplies incontrovertible proof. The National Foundation for Women Business Owners (NFWBO) has been hard at work, researching the small business climate for women and identifying strong trends. Fifty Top Women Show Trends In one study done jointly with IBM, the NFWBO used as its subjects 50 top women business owners (plus 10 more up-and-coming) to compile these findings: These women owners cover a wide range of industry categories, for example: 27 percent in manufacturing, 25 percent in retail trade, and 10 percent in real estate. Slightly less than half (46 percent) of these women inherited their businesses, and more than half began their own: 34 percent by themselves, and 17 percent with others. As a group, the study subjects generate $139 billion in revenue and employ more than 150,000 workers. And, the numbers keep increasing. The Majority of Women Owners Prefer “Small” More research from the NFWBO shows another picture: that women owners, taken as a whole, prefer pared-down operations. The very smallest, in fact: among the approximately eight million women-owned businesses in the U.S., 75 percent of these are one-person operations with no employees. Ownership of such a small business gives women maximum flexibility with work schedules and offers a better chance of keeping their home lives healthy as well. Ignoring the big-business gurus who claim that small does not equal successful, women owners continue to prefer keeping their businesses small. Although the NFWBO research reveals that fewer than one percent of... read more

Why Do People Go Into Business?

41% joined family business 36% wanted more control over future 27% tired of working for someone else 5% downsized or laid off *Source: Dun & Bradstreet 19th Annual Small Business Survey May 2000. Totals add up to more than 100% because respondents could choose more than one reason for going into business for themselves. This was in the May 2001 issue of INC... read more

What makes Your Company Unique?

There are unique attributes of a company that make it more attractive to a possible acquirer and/or more valuable. Certainly, the numbers are important, but potential buyers will also look beyond them. Factors that make your company special or unique can often not only make the difference in a possible sale or merger, but also can dramatically increase value. Review the following to see if any of them apply to your company and if they are transferable to new ownership. Brand name or identity Do any of your products have a well recognizable name? It doesn’t have to be Kleenex or Coke, but a name that might be well known in a specific geographic region, or a name that is identified with a specific product. A product with a unique appearance, taste, or image is also a big plus. For example, Cape Cod Potato Chips have a unique regional identity, and also a distinctive taste. Both factors are big pluses when it comes time to sell. Dominant market position A company doesn’t have to be a Fortune 500 firm to have a dominant position in the market place. Being the major player in a niche market is a dominant position. Possible purchasers, acquirers, such as buy-out groups, look to the major players in a particular industry regardless of how small it is. Customer lists Newsletters and other publications have, over the years, built mailing lists and subscriber lists that create a unique loyalty base. Just as many personal services have created this base, a number of other factors have contributed to the building of it. The resulting loyalty may... read more

Ten Ways To Cut It

The Cost of Doing Business Really Can Go Down It’s easy to be negative about cost-cutting. “Everything just costs more,” a business owner will say; the subtext being, “What’s the use?” Don’t give up. There are ways to cut costs. The first step is to identify where the money goes . . . and why. Then look at creative ways to shave off the non-essential while keeping the shape of your business intact. 1. Look Beyond In-House Outsourcing is the latest word in cost-cutting, and it can mean more than one thing. First–outsourcing labor. Temporary employees or contract workers are the answer for jobs that aren’t included in the daily running of a business. Temps make sense for holiday rush periods or for short-term assignments or campaigns. Outsourcing certain operations, such as photocopying, mailing, and telephone answering, is an increasingly popular way to cut down on carrying these costs in-house. Another, less typical, kind of outsourcing is “hiring” temporary space. If your business needs a conference room only occasionally or only a small portion of a warehouse, consider subletting the space from another business and cut the square footage of your own operation. 2. Don’t Assume Outsourcing Is Always Cheaper It pays to keep some operations in-house. For instance, if your receptionist can do some on-line bookkeeping while waiting for the phone to ring, or if your warehouse worker can stuff envelopes for a mailing in between delivery deadlines, you should consider these as in-house candidates. In addition, there are some jobs that should stay in-house even if outsourcing may appear to be a bargain–those that involve issues of... read more

Size Break Down Of Businesses

Here is a common and much-used breakdown by the federal governments Small Business Administration (SBA): Very Small Business 19 or fewer employees Small Business 20 to 99 employees Medium-Size Business 100 to 499 employees Large Business 500+... read more

Normalizing the Statements Isn’t Always Normal

Definitions Expense – anything that a company buys that has an economic life of less than one year. It shows up immediately on the income statement. Capitalized items – have an economic life of one year or more and the cost is moved to the balance sheet, and then these costs can be written down by depreciation or amortization over time. Normalized financial statements – statements that have been adjusted for items not representative of the current status of the business. Normalizing statements could include such adjustments as a non-recurring event such as attorney fees expended in litigation. Another non-recurring event might be a plant closing, or adjustments of abnormal depreciation. Sometimes owner’s compensation and benefits need to be restated to a competitive market value. As Americans have discovered over the past few months, many public companies will stop at nothing to maximize earnings and therefore increase the price of their stock. Most private businesses take the opposite tack and try to minimize earnings to reduce their tax liability. After all, they don’t have Wall Street and shareholders to please. The less their tax obligation – the more discretionary money they have personally available. Unfortunately, when it comes time to sell, it’s also time to “pay the piper.” However, many business valuation professionals are aware of this incongruity, and make allowances for it in their approach to valuing the company. It is called “recasting” or “normalizing” the statements. Due to all of the recent publicity concerning the accounting irregularities among some of the country’s largest companies, Fortune magazine stated that America has lost its way. In fact, the magazine’s... read more
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M & A Source • International Business Brokers Association (IBBA) • Business Brokers of Florida • FICPA • Better Business Bureau *Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce * Davie/Cooper City Chamber of Commerce * Society of Commercial Realtors* Independent Insurance Agents of Broward County* Network Professionals - South Florida Networking Group* 6 Degrees of Golf