Wayne Swisher is one of the newest additions to the team here at Apex. As many do, he comes from a business owner background himself, having bought, built, and sold several businesses. Wayne’s worked in everything from manufacturing and distribution to agribusiness to SaaS to real estate.
How It Started
Wayne grew up on a small farm and so was no stranger to odd jobs. His mother even acted as an agent to get him weed-pulling gigs. When he got through college he started out in Fortune 500 corporate America but found out pretty quickly it wasn’t for him.
Instead, he picked up an MBA en route to, along with his brother, buying his father out of a family business which he then proceeded to grow with his partners from 25 employees to over 600. He exited in 2010.
How It’s Going
When asked why he wants to be a broker, Wayne confesses that he loves the art of the deal. “I have been so blessed to work with so many terrific people and to have been in and around deals of many sizes across many industries. I want to share the knowledge I’ve gained to help make others’ dreams come true, be it buying or selling a business.”
So, even though he’s new to business brokering, Wayne’s not new to buying and selling businesses. We asked for his tips for buyers:
- Be patient. The right deal for you is out there. The hurry-up offense doesn’t end well in this scenario.
- Think outside the box. Don’t look at what a business is doing now. Look at what it could do. You’re buying tomorrow’s opportunities, not yesterday’s or today’s.
- Identify your passion/dream. What is it that you are really passionate about or want to do? The better you can identify that and match it to an opportunity, the better long-term result you’re going to have.
- Do NOT buy something “just for the money.” You’re always going to be happier pursuing a passion or dream (See #3). If you’re just doing it for the money, how is it any different from a job?
He’s got tips for sellers too:
- Know when it’s time to fold ‘em. Some people chase a “peak” selling point only to miss it and the tremendous amount of value they worked for.
- Be prepared well in advance of a sale with SOPs, clean books, customer contracts, and a well-trained team.
- Be replaceable. Selling a job is a much harder proposition than selling a business.
- Be open to creative deal structures. If you’re fixated on only one possible outcome, you may limit what you can get.
When he’s not meeting clients, Wayne is spending time with his wife Kelly or jamming on the bass guitar.
Can’t get enough Wayne? You can listen to his podcast appearance here.