Your personal roadmap to selling your business

  • We focus exclusively on assisting medium-sized companies in all aspects of corporate succession.
  • With our know-how, we decisively increase the probability of success in corporate transactions. In our circle of partners we have a professional team of over 25 specialists with their own, operational and entrepreneurial experience.
  • We manage over 6,000 ongoing contacts with prospective buyers in our own database of investment companies, financial investors, VC companies, venture and equity investors.
  • Nationally and internationally, we are connected to the most renowned networks for the purchase and sale of companies. Behind this are a good 300,000 contacts to investors - nationally and internationally.
Nils Koerber - The art of letting go
  • A relay runner stands in his starting block and waits for the start signal

    In the DACH region, over 50% of family businesses in all three countries are now heading towards business succession

    (Source DIHK Study 2018, IFM-Bonn and KERN Succession Study 2017 + 2020).

    The pace of ageing of owners and shareholders is increasing so rapidly,

    that a good 60% will already be reached in 2022.

    The challenge: With the retirement of the baby boomers, there is a dramatic slump in demographic succession. There is not only a lack of employees at all levels, but also of founders and successors as company leaders.

    And the economic climate is becoming harsher and tends to be more unpleasant. Gradually, but visibly.

    Secure your assets, safeguard your employees' jobs and start your succession project!

    If not now, when?

    The right time
  • Screenshot of the KERN Best Consultant and Top Consultant 2019 awards

    Your company sale requires the highest level of professionalism and discretion at the same time. Trust the Statements from our customers or have a look at one of our National cooperation an. Upon request, we will be happy to name specific contact persons who can give you a personal statement on our performance. Check our values for cooperation.

    References for your safety
  • Zoom view of a staff member while working on the laptop

    You explain your company and its history to us and tell us the basis of your business concept and the goals of your succession planning.

    The start of our cooperation
  • The decision-maker seminar for personal preparation of a company succession

    To the extent known, provide us with the insider information about the industry and the market necessary for marketing.

  • A man in a suit looks through binoculars

    We get a picture of the industry, the conditions in the market as well as the future market development in connection with the possible buyer target groups.

  • Mindmap on strategy with planning, competence, foresight, goals, finances, etc.

    We review your documents and discuss with you the next steps of a holistic sales strategy (stumbling blocks for a sale, measures for preparation, individual search procedure or bidding procedure, data preparation for a later buyer's examination, definition of the scope of the sale, etc.) What should be sold, what should not be sold?

  • An elderly lady and an elderly gentleman keep fit doing cardio

    Optionally, we start with a joint fitness check on the saleability or transferability of your business (separate offer if necessary).
    With over 300 questions, you will receive an in-depth analysis of your ACTUAL situation and we will review the status quo with you in the areas of planning and preparation, provision and asset situation, succession options, and law,
    Taxes and business administration.

    Extended you will receive an assessment from us
    to the value of your company and to the possible market price.

    A protocol gives you the basis for assessing
    of your company fitness in matters of business succession.
    If you wish, you can also receive concrete recommendations for possible actions.

  • In this step follows for you the detailed assessment of your company.

    As a rule, we work according to the capitalised earnings value method in the classification according to the IDWS1 (Institut der Deutschen Wirtschaftsprüfer) method.


    The basis is the annual financial statements of the last 3 business years. These are adjusted for extraordinary expenses or income. Likewise, a realistic assessment of costs, wages and salaries or tax optimisation is carried out.

    In the case of several companies, it is advisable to consolidate the figures (separate service) for the sake of compact clarity.


    On this basis, planning figures for the future, economic development of at least 3 to 5 years are prepared. If you wish, we can support you in this important task of determining value.

    The assumptions of the target figures should be justifiable and take into account the upcoming succession.


    In this process, you receive a draft in advance, which we then discuss and approve with you for a final version. Of course, we work closely with your tax advisor in this important analysis and determination of the company value.


    The determination of a company's value is not only an important basis for decision-making for buyers, but is also actually almost indispensable for banks and financing partners in the context of a transaction.

    Your company's performance will thus be comprehensible and the perspective of the target figures will justify the important future of an acquirer.


    For smaller companies (size of less than 1 million euros/CHF transaction value), the Business valuation may also be omitted or implemented in another standard.

    Alternatively, the condensed key figures of the past are shown in a short form. Supplemented by the planned figures mentioned above.
    However, not on the basis of the recognised income capitalisation approach according to IDWS1.


    For certain business models there is also the Substance value method or AWH method.

    You will receive the final version in two print versions (bound) and as a digital file in PDF format.

    Valuation and pricing options
  • Businessman drawing a mind map with a white pen in front of a plexiglass screen

    We prepare your data in a discussable outline, form and structure (preparation analogous to the content of your company's future exposé ? KERN support checklist).

    Sales documents and distribution
  • Strongly smiling man raising his hand in the Italian gesture for bene

    We work with you to develop arguments for the further sales strategy and jointly check the sustainability of the arguments.

  • Businessmen at a table hold puzzle pieces of white paper to each other

    We discuss variants of effective sales strategies and determine the strategies that ultimately appear promising together with you (individual search procedure or bidding procedure). At this point, important questions of tax and legal implications are also weighed up in individual cases.

  • Exposé cover sheet of Time Work GmbH with photo of an industrial landscape

    We prepare a detailed information memorandum (exposé), if necessary also in foreign languages of your choice or necessity of the target group (at cost). Your detailed company evaluation is integrated into this. Depending on the market situation (absolute certainty about the competition), we work with an upstream, neutral exposé as a "safety buffer". This way, no competitor on the market can recognise that you are on the way to securing succession with your company.

  • View of a few feet standing at a crossroads

    We discuss a 'deal design' with variants for you and potential buyers.

    What can different scenarios look like for different buyers? What is the legal and tax significance and impact?

  • Graphic of 7 black males with one orange male in the middle

    We define the primary and secondary buyer groups and, if necessary, draw up a list of all potential interested parties.

  • Red stamp imprint with the inscription "Confidential

    We compile an anonymised and completely neutral short profile of your company (key data and outstanding plus points) to anonymously clarify the basic interest of the addressees.

  • A hand ticks off items on a list with checkmarks

    All documents are checked and explicitly released by you. This way you know exactly what others can find out about your company and always remain the decision-maker of the process at this point.

    In parallel, we already inform you about possible audit procedures of a transferee and prepare you with detailed checklists for a professional data presentation.

  • A needle with a blue head stuck in a haystack

    We contact the potential buyers in writing and, if necessary, by telephone and provide initial anonymous data. Extended by individual or telephone interviews.

    Short video on the search for buyers

    The needle in the haystack
  • Man holding up a pack of eggs with a question mark on the left and a magnifying glass on the right

    We intensify our contacts with partners, banks and several thousand suitable MBI candidates as well as equity investment companies. You always receive the CVs or further company details of investors before a possible handover of the detailed exposé. Only with your approval do we deepen the exchange of information. With this security rule, no data of your company can unintentionally get into the hands of third parties.

  • A keyboard with a bright red key and the inscription "Datenschutz" (data protection)

    Upon confirmation of interest, we will arrange for the necessary non-disclosure agreement and transmit further company data.

  • A man holds a sheet of paper with a question mark on it in front of his face

    On request, we will anonymously list your company on the largest and most reliable company exchanges in Germany and Europe.

    We have selectively recorded over 210,000 concrete prospective buyers in our direct network alone. In the national and international environment, buyers are constantly looking for investment opportunities.

  • Close-up of an ear of wheat against a blue sky

    We select and qualify interested parties for contract negotiations. Each interested party is checked for sustained interest within a set time frame. In the process, we also pay particular attention to the seriousness of the potential acquirers. We separate the wheat from the chaff for you.

  • A counsellor shakes a client's hand and smiles as he does so

    We arrange appointments with the relevant interested parties, coordinate the company presentation and, if necessary, the submission of offers by the interested parties, which we subsequently compare and, if necessary, concretise within the framework of a competition.

    The negotiations
  • Follow-up day

    We coordinate and moderate the joint talks, ensure the necessary flow of information and the documentation of the negotiation steps. This work often resembles that of an attentive "interpreter". Verbally expressed expectations, agreements and wishes can quickly become a "dealbreaker" if they are not precisely translated, checked and documented in writing at an early stage.

  • Man stands in front of a white concrete labyrinth and grabs his head in wonderment

    We accompany the decision-making process on both sides by discussing the possible 'deal design' and assessing it from a commercial, legal and tax perspective (involving selected experts from our network or your desired specialists).

  • Advisor with a client at the signing of the contract

    We structure the questions from interested parties and coordinate the answers with you in detail.

  • An apple with a rotten spot next to a fresh apple

    We compare the interested parties/offers and advise and accompany you in the negotiation tactics.

  • "Our expert service" lettering in white and yellow on a green background

    We accompany the further process up to the conclusion of the purchase agreement with the involvement of legal and tax experts with M&A experience. Of course, you are free to choose them and instruct the lawyer/tax advisor or auditor of your choice directly. From our tested network or your personal environment.

    Preliminary contract, inspection and purchase contract
  • Chessboard with chess pieces in which a black piece captures the queen.

    We draw up a letter of intent or a preliminary contract with these experts.

  • Picture of a blue file order with the inscription "Due Diligence".

    We accompany the due diligence reviews (review of all documents by the buyer) and moderate the final negotiations.

    The effort involved in such a purchase review should not be underestimated, as even at this stage of the sales process, work is usually carried out in strict confidence and undercover. That is why we prepare you for the upcoming questions and examination processes at a very early stage. And when an investor brings out the "big silverware" for this stage of the process, you should certainly be able to handle it professionally on your side with us.

  • A notary's deed on white-yellow paper with stamp and fountain pen lying on it

    We prepare a draft of the purchase contract with the aforementioned experts and support you until the legally binding signatures are provided.

  • One hundred and five hundred euro notes with coins on a table

    If you wish, we will accompany you during the implementation of the payment and handover.

  • 3 day sailing trip

    We are also available to advise on questions after the handover. These can be, for example, integration processes into a new structure. The updating of a company mission statement or team development in the context of the handover. Whatever your needs as a transferor might be - ask us - we have a national and international network with experienced experts in all disciplines of a company succession.

  • You have successfully achieved your goal ? Your succession for your company(ies) is secured. You have transferred an important value component of your assets into your future. You have succeeded in one of the greatest tasks and challenges in entrepreneurial life!


Why now?Enthusiastic customersThe analysisInsider knowledgeMarket reviewSales strategyFitness checkValue and pricewhet the appetiteConvinceTactics and toolsThe eye eats with youClarityWho, where and howSecurity & DiscretionYou decide. Always.International and/or nationalTapping targeted sourcesObligation of confidentialityExperience and disseminationCritical selectionIn the middle of the raceOrganisation, moderation, documentationExpertise Professional process structuresSelection criteriaGood contracts = good tolerateMade to measureSo let him who commits himself for everFinalThe good in the endAftercare is prevention

Participate now free of charge in the webinar "Selling a business without risk and loss of value".

In this special webinar, you will learn in just over 80 minutes how to find the right buyer for your company safely, discreetly and at the best price.