As the founder and owner of a small financial planning practice, Ovation Finance Ltd, I found myself repeatedly being asked the same question by business advisers, accountants, and other business owners: “What are you doing to add value to your business?”
For some reason I found this an extremely difficult question to answer. Then, one day, I finally realised why. I wasn’t focused on the value of my business because I wasn’t focused on selling my business.
If I sold Ovation, I would end up with a lump of cash in the bank. I would then find myself sat on the sofa the next day without two things: a sense of purpose and an income.
To get an income, I could invest, perhaps in the stock market or in a property. What returns might I get? Four per cent, after tax?
If I invested in a small business, however, I should be able to achieve a much better return. More importantly, I could also get involved. In that way I could get an income and get my sense of purpose back.
And if I was going to get involved in a business, it should really be in something I know a little about. Like, maybe, a small financial planning practice…
So why sell in the first place?
The Eternal Business Consultancy was established to promote the concept of employee ownership and, in particular, the use of the Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) as a method of succession planning for owners.
Success of the business will be how many EOT businesses exist in the UK.
This will be achieved by:
- Publicising the concept (Chris Budd often talks at conferences and seminars);
- Providing a cheap pathway for businesses to follow (The Eternal Business Book)
- Providing a low cost programme for companies to work through (The Eternal Business Programme)
- Providing a variety of advisers highly skilled and knowledgeable in the field of employee ownership (the Associates)
At the time of starting this website (July 2018) there are some 320 employee owned businesses.
Chris Budd founded Ovation Finance Ltd in 2000 and sold it to an Employee Ownership Trust 18 years later.
In addition to The Eternal Business, he is the author of several novels, and The Financial Wellbeing Book (the proceeds of which go to the Penny Brohn UK cancer charity of which Chris is a director.
He also helps front the Financial Wellbeing Podcast as part of his objective to change the way we see money from a means in itself, to an enabler of wellbeing.
Chris lives in Somerset, England, with his family and more guitars than he needs.