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What will my business look like after investment?

By Darren Pick, Portfolio Managing Director at Upliift.

You’ve spent many years building a successful business, and you’re now looking to take some money off the table and enjoy the fruits of your labour, by selling all or part of your shareholding to an outside investor. Understandably, you may be concerned about protecting your legacy: the business you’ve spent years building, your brand, team, and culture.

At Upliift, we want to help businesses retain the magic that made them successful in the first place, while supporting them to achieve their maximum potential over the long term.

I work with our acquired businesses beyond acquisition, guiding them through onboarding, transition, and operational challenges as they arise. Here’s an idea of what that experience involves for founders.

 Trust and collaboration

From our first conversation, we’re looking get under the skin of your business, your culture, and your growth story. Trust is crucial, so we build relationships from the top down. We learn from your management team’s knowledge and experience: they’ll continue in their roles to lead the business. Our team is based across Europe, so meetings often happen in person, and in your language.

You’ll still recognise your business 

Company culture, people, and the richness of your experience all contribute to the success of a business. We always seek to understand how these less tangible – but still important – aspects of your business have helped you get to where you are now so they can be preserved and built upon.

Unlike some, we won’t assimilate your business under a different brand or bring in a new management team. Nor will we fold the existing team into a corporate megastructure. This means you, your people, and your customers will continue to recognise the business as the one it’s always been.

You’re unique, and so is our approach

We recognise that every business is different, and we tailor our recommendations accordingly. It could be tweaking an operational process or streamlining finance, adjusting product strategy, or launching in an entirely new market. This approach means you continue to thrive where you’re already thriving and build on areas that could work harder for your business.

Revealing success factors

Many founders often find it difficult to pinpoint exactly what drives the success of their business. We help deliver insights that explain growth patterns so they can be replicated.

Our team brings the collective learnings from decades of experience acquiring and managing niche software companies, drawing on a range of best practices that will accelerate your company’s growth.  More than anything else, we can bring proven and highly relevant data, metrics, and KPIs that can help you model your plans and sense-check your decisions.

Focused on long-term growth

Many investors approach every acquisition with a timeline for earning a return. These investors will generally prioritise cash generation over business growth, potentially stifling a business’s prospects. We’re different: we work based on a permanent equity model. We’re in it for the long term and take a more patient approach.

Our long-term commitment is also demonstrated through our ongoing coaching of your team. We can help with your next steps, help identify, and train successors in your company.  We also connect founders of the businesses in our portfolio to one another – helping to encourage sharing of ideas, experiences, and even talent.

We always prioritise listening, empathy, and collaboration. This is the Upliift you knew before investment, and it’s the Upliift you’ll work with after the deal is done. No surprises.

If you’d like to learn more about our approach, please contact us today. Or if you’re considering investment options for your business, read our eBook: “What’s next? Weighing up the exit options for niche software business owners in Europe”.

About Darren Pick:

Darren has over 10 years’ experience of operating niche software businesses, and brings the collective learnings from over 1,000 acquisitions. Darren and his team are responsible for the strategy, growth, and operational leadership of all Upliift’s acquisitions. They pride themselves on working collaboratively and transparently with founders to reach the best long term outcomes for everyone involved in the transaction.

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