Maylands Vet

Steve Baker – Seller of Maylands Vet:

Thanks for the opportunity to give feedback on the sales process with yourself.
I would talk anybody into using your services if asked but a warts and all tell all could be useful to you and HPB Brokers generally … otherwise feel free to relegate my feedback to the “deleted” bin as you see fit 😂

Most certainly your services were helpful. It was far more challenging selling the smaller practice this time around compared to my previous experience with a larger practice sale a number of years ago. The target market was completely different .. I had had a small queue of individuals who wanted the opportunity to purchase the larger one previously. Not so this time around with what could have been perceived as just “another smaller suburban city practice” this time round.

Your advice was concise and succinct. It was helpful where you related to your own experiences when you sold your practice and provided your own previous “hands on” guidance. The combination of email, texts and timely phone calls were appropriate at each occasion.

Being aware that I had spent a year attempting to sell my practice myself (after my first success with a much larger practice sale several years earlier which lulled me into a misguided sense of confidence that I would do it again 😀), in hindsight I now believe the time I’d invested in these attempts were merely good training for being more prepared in sourcing the information required for when I made the decision to use your broker services. So, whilst I ended up with a significant delay (at least a year) before having yourself represent my practice for sale I’ve taken the positive from my own experience to know how to quickly source information to assist in keeping your ball rolling for interaction with prospective purchasers (and tyre kickers).

As just mentioned above, and for the benefit of any potential future sellers that may have the opportunity to read my comments, screening prospective purchasers should not be underestimated as this was a big part of the time spent in that year I spent “not” selling my practice.

Rob’s communication was agreeable, succinct and I particularly like his dry sense of humour. Don’t confuse this with being abrupt or even standoffish ….. I suspect some people may interpret this in a different light. I like dryness and compact communication that is straight to the point … it saves a lot of time. I do know that Rob was 100% keen, patient, determined and committed with my practice sale throughout the entire process even though a couple of times I felt like not continuing when renewing the broker’s contract …. I am 150% glad I persisted as it can be an exhausting journey which influences our own perceptions and emotions of the process along the way. Having a broker as a stabiliser and for guidance was always reassuring. Thanks for sticking with me to sell my practice Rob. 

Also be mindful that my selling experience with HPB Brokers had encompassed the entire commencement of the Covid pandemic whereby the world shut down and he’d only just sent out marketing emails and a hard copy flyer; this brought everything to a grinding halt just as the exciting process started …. almost 5 months later we picked up where we left off.

Were there things you found invaluable or that you could not have done yourself?
Firstly, access to an up-to-date database of potential purchasers is something that you can’t buy just up the road at the corner store. It is something that is clearly researched and built up over time. This is a huge part of where a brokerage service earns its keep to draw attention to an individual practice that is going to be sold.

Secondly, weeding out the time wasters and dreamers. If one ever tries to sell a practice because you think “how hard can it be …. I can save thousands doing it myself”, I never really appreciated just how much time is involved in passing confidential information to numerous prospective purchasers when so many are either time wasters or it just isn’t the practice for them …. one cannot predict this in advance. 

Thirdly, it is challenging to be seen as credible and impartial as a seller when you are also your own self-broker. It can be done but it is far more challenging without a third party as a broker in my opinion …. I know, I tried.

Do you think you could have achieved the same result yourself?
I’ve probably covered this answer above but in simple term NO. To be perfectly frank, I had attempted already in the year prior to listing with Rob at HPB Brokers …. over a period of almost a year.

I distinctly recall having a conversation with another vet colleague as she knew I’d sold my previously practice. The individual was contemplating selling and was deciding whether to list with a broker or not but I had described to the person that whilst there was still a lot of work involved either way they chose (getting P&L’s up to date, pulling out up to date performance reports which had to be repeated as time passed, equipment list valuations and keeping it current etc etc) and that they shouldn’t discount doing it themselves. 

Well, in hindsight, shortly after our conversation I noticed hers was listed with HPB when I received the mail out flyer for that persons practice and that it was subsequently under offer within a month or so then marked as “sold” a while later. I, on the other hand, did NOT succeed in selling my practice (fairly similar sized practice to the other persons) and over the remainder of almost a year of hard work and hassle of dealing with prospectives I relented and contacted Rob at HPB Brokers. I suspect it may be possible and even likely that some of those prospective purchasers may have been influenced to not have a second look as for some it would forever be marked with the taint of “what’s wrong with this practice as I see it still hasn’t sold”. It’s funny really as I recall over the years of seeing a couple of practices just like this that I would never have bothered looking at had I been in the market to purchase a practice and now I knew directly why.

What were the things I achieved for you?

  • Access to a database of potentials
  • Being the unbiased third party … I know there is a natural sales bias as this is how a broker earns the income, but a broker screens the information and fairly assesses the practice on so many levels (appearance, financial performance etc) to guide the arrival to a fair value to deliver to the interested market. I found Rob’s guidance here was completely fair and balanced and he was able to justify how he arrived at this guidance.
  • Guidance of what information was most relevant …. a self seller can provide too much information or not distill it down adequately
  • Organised a professional photographer for visuals for website and design a flyer (I think many people could think they could do it but having a succinct template format and a few known professional photographers to draw upon does help)
  • Guided the potential purchasers
  • Continued to guide THE purchaser through the buying process (eg seeking finance)
  • Managing both buyer and seller to a successful settlement and smooth handover by managing expectations on both sides of the transaction – this can be more challenging than it seems when one is attempting to sell oneself.

Were you happy with the final price you achieved?
Yes…. no question.

Who wouldn’t be happy with a fair price for less hassle and you successfully matched up a buyer with the seller right through to a settlement … that’s 100% where the value was derived from using a broker because there are so many steps where failure could and more likely to occur if not using a broker. To be frank again …. a couple of years ago my likelihood of me using a broker were zero percent.

Having a broker who has owned and sold a vet practice previously gave credence to Rob’s value as a broker.

Were there extra services you did not expect?
No. Nothing exceeded my expectations other than my own stupidity of not using a broker in the first place for this practice

Would you use me again in the same circumstances?
Yes, 100% I would.

Would you recommend me to others?
Yes, 100% I would and I will.

Maylands Vet Clinic is the equivalent of a 1.5 Vet, Small animal Practice located in the Perth Riverside suburb of Maylands. It is a 100% Small animal practice with unsurpassed Highway exposure.


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