Meet the character many small business owners have in mind from the day their business opens—the person who’s one day going to take it over and send them on their way with a bag of money.

This is the acquirer.

The only reason for shunning the acquirer would be an exit strategy of bolting the doors and walking away—no muss, no fuss, no bag. If that’s your plan, it doesn’t necessarily follow that you should skip the rest of this chapter. Stay with me for a while yet and perhaps you’ll be persuaded to consider a more rewarding alternative: building your business with an eventual sale in mind.