So funny it can make you cry


I hope you enjoy some of the one-liners I’ve imagined from the dealmaking playing field.

(Thank you to the business buyers, sellers, advisors and others whose escapades were so funny they made us cry.) Ted Leverette


Whaddaya call . . . ?

. . . typical marketplace intelligence. Wishful thinking.

. . . a business worth buying? About one in five.

. . . retail businesses? Apocalypse for certain sectors (Greater Fools welcome); business buyers beware.

. . . a cookbook approach to buy or sell a business? A bad recipe.

. . . investment bankers? Laughing all the way to their bank.

. . . a pessimist? A reformed optimist.

. . . a one-person business? A hobby.

. . . a “dream” business? A nightmare.

. . . a potential investor? A maybe.

. . . a day trader? An insomniac.

. . . bankers who ignore you? Miss a couple of payments to find out.

. . . forecasts? Imaginative fiction.

. . . a long-term investment? A failing investment.

. . . a Golden Parachute? Pickpocketing the shareholders.

. . . a winning business plan? An uncompleted task.

. . . a glass half full? Half empty.

. . . a do-it-yourselfer? A blooper in-waiting.

. . . a DIYer? Artificial intelligence.

. . . a partner? Someone you know well enough to get money from but not well enough to give money to.

. . . a business opportunity? Someone’s don’t-wanter.

. . . a “multi-billion dollar industry” business opportunity? A field saturated with competitors.

. . . a seller of a business proclaiming “earn huge income immediately”? A tooth fairy.

. . . a business owner without an exit strategy? No place to go. (Honorable mention: Thinking about it.)

. . . a Greater Fool? The seller’s savior.

. . . an expert financial adviser? An advisor.

. . . a retiree? Unemployed.

. . . a business appraisers’ “Fair Market Value”? The value of items sold at a country fair.

. . . something too good to be true? Too good to be true.

. . . a homeless accountant? Living in a tax shelter.

. . . an accountant’s sense of humor? It’s accrual world.

. . . the “American Dream”? A dream.

. . . a competitive advantage? You have it; they want it.

. . . funny money? A nickel ain’t worth a dime anymore. (Yogi Berra)

. . . a bank robber. Wall Street investment bankster!

. . . the hidden market of businesses for sale? Click.


What about these? Help!

. . . a millennial trying to buy a business?

. . . a business broker?

. . . a business seller trying to . . .?

. . . a dumb deal?

. . . a lawyer advising a . . .?

. . . a “fun business” to own?

. . . an “excellent” opportunity?

. . . a bright idea?

. . . ?


You’re still reading so you deserve one of my favorite stories:

A few days after buying a business, the new owner went to a fortune teller who looked into a crystal ball and said, “Owning your business will be a living nightmare for the next three years.”

“Then what will happen?” asked the man, hopefully.”

“Then you’ll get used to it”


Here’s a good news story about one of our clients:

John used the techniques I [Ted Leverette] taught him. He bought a forty-year old manufacturer of patented low-tech industrial products. The elderly man who was selling the company invented some of the products. These products do not become obsolete. All of the company’s revenue came from repeat business and word-of-mouth among customers. He hadn’t made a sales call in years. He had no catalog or brochure. No marketing effort whatsoever. We noticed that the company’s products were only sold in the U.S. We asked if there was demand for them abroad. The owner said there was but he never got around to looking into it because he didn’t want to put up with all the paperwork necessary to export and do business with foreigners.

Here’s what my client, John, did. Within ninety days of buying the company, he launched a national marketing blitz. He established dealers across the country. (Before then, the company sold direct to customers.) He furnished dealers with four-color marketing materials. He sent them a video showing how to install and service the products. Within five months, he was selling internationally. Within six months, the company’s profits had doubled, from $20,000 per month to $40,000 per month; that’s nearly $500,000 per year! Around that time, he got his first offer to buy his business from a large company that had been watching this sleepy little firm take off like a rocket ship.

John was an experienced businessman. He knew how to run and grow companies. But he was not an expert in buying them. And, he recognized that even if he knew how to buy, he first had to find a winner. My Business-For-Sale Locating & Screening System ™ enabled him to see dozens of companies. He cherry-picked the winner he bought from several other winners. Would you like to do that?


Remember . . .

“Money won’t make you happy . . . but everybody wants to find out for themselves.” (Zig Ziglar)

Click if you want to get your share.


Have fun with us, please!

Copy any of the questions and/or the answers (in our list above), or come up with your own, and then email your insight. (We will keep private your submission unless you tell us to attribute you).

Email Ted J. Leverette, The Original Business Buyer Advocate ® Since the 1970s.
“Partner” On-Call Network, LLC


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