You may be involved in Private Equity or Venture Capital, an Accountant, Business Advisor, Financier, Banker or Institutional investor with a portfolio of investments. Or you may be a business owner or shareholder.
In an increasingly volatile and uncertain world, market conditions are constantly changing – increasing decision-making risk and making the return on your investments hard to predict.
Working with SalesLevers delivers predictability by improving, increasing and structuring the sales performance of your portfolio companies.
We work with owners and portfolio company management teams wherever they are in their business lifecycle to increase EBITDA and Enterprise Value. This could be pre or post acquisition, as you are planning to grow, within a planned growth phase, or preparing for exit.
In short, we help to increase and secure the return on your investment.
As an external investor you may want to:-
- Reduce risks when buying
- Accelerate profitable growth
- Shorten exit period
- Build and crystallise Enterprise Value
- Increase transparency
- Improve failing investments quickly
- De-risk forecasting
As a business owner or an investor you may want to:-
- Raise funds
- Sell for as much as possible
- Keep investors happy
- Grow top line and margin
- Win new customers
- Retain existing customers
- Generate opportunity
Our way of working
We work with you on a sliding scale basis from light touch to full immersion and generally fits into five areas:-
- Sales due diligence: A wide-ranging analysis to quantify risks and opportunities for improvement in the sales function. It validates or challenges preinvestment decisions.
- Post-investment reconnaissance: A commercial reconnaissance to identify, quantify and prioritise risks and opportunities which the sales function presents to achieving business goals.
- Post-acquisition integration – 100 day planning: An accelerated process to form and execute a plan to focus and energise sales in the first hundred days.
- Sales performance improvement: To form and execute sales performance improvement plans for portfolio companies.
- Vendor due diligence/Exit planning and preparation: To identify and execute on opportunities to improve and present the sales function and its improved results in the lead up to exit.
Your Return on Investment
Before you engage a firm like SalesLevers you need to be confident that your investment will generate a serious return. This may involve:-
- Meeting and exceeding your group’s IRR criteria
- Demonstrating to equity partners that this is worth doing
- Hitting targets on your own balanced scorecard
The examples below of projects carried out by members of the SalesLevers team should give you a solid sense of reassurance that SalesLevers can and do deliver.
Of course it takes work on both sides; and of course we cannot always prove cause and effect. But cases below demonstrate what our clients tell us is not a matter of words only. The numbers also speak volumes about profit, payback and Return on Investment.
Protecting sale value
“We were in the final stages of selling a company. The price was £14.7Million. We knew they would try and chip the price at the closing meeting. They came in at £13Million. I thought back to your workshop and remembered what I’d seen and learned. I stood up, said: “you’ve given me no reason to move my price. You’ll have to do better than that” and left the room. They called me back in and we signed at £14.7Million. It wasn’t a particularly brilliant tactic but your course reminded me to expect the challenge and it gave me the confidence to respond in the way I did. So I suppose £1.7Million saved on a deal isn’t bad ROI!”
Driving organic growth
Twelve key account teams went through a development campaign based around live accounts. The sales from the accounts were measured for the six months before the training. After a 12 month gap the same accounts were measured again. The group we worked with outperformed the control group by a factor of 4.
New business development
Forty-one professionals engaged in a new business development programme of training supported by external coaching. In 3 months these 41 professionals identified £2.62Million of additional sales which they attributed to the programme.
Hitting ambitious goals
“We had stated ambitious goals but achieved 142% plan fulfilment during the whole project period and doubled sales in one of the three months of the project. Our team gained a valuable tool for the future that they can use when leading sales of other products and reaching similar results during sales campaigns.”
“We have written more business in the quarter following the project than in the previous four quarters combined. Of course this is partly due to the many things we have been doing ourselves, but there is no doubt in my mind that this project has contributed to this success”
Sales acceleration and EBITDA growth
The sales result had been static and with very high fixed costs, the business was seriously underreporting. A “sales accelerator” project commissioned by a Private Equity house generated an incremental £1.67Million of contribution in the first 30 days and “our best quarter in seven years”. This represented a 29% increase in sales. Sales that year rose from £45Mn to £51Mn with much of this dropping straight to EBITDA with a corresponding significant change in valuation.
Providing structure to the sales function
Working with an Internet payment provider over 3 years we provided the sales direction that gave structure to the sales function to:-
- Grow sales revenue
- Increase merchant engagement
- Reduce merchant churn
- Implement a robust and lasting structure in the sales resource
This resulted in a business sale to a global Internet payment services provider for 3 times the original offer.
These examples should give strong grounds for real confidence in working with the SalesLevers team.
If you would like to explore how this could work for you we would propose a short meeting to introduce how happens in more detail and likely short, medium and longer term improvements with an idea of next steps.
We also have a 30 minute podcast interview with one of our team which will help you understand more about how we work. Click here to listen.
And for more details please email Charlie Newby.