1 The most innovative company in our sector
LINK won the REINZ inaugural innovation award for the valuation tool that has been created to conduct business appraisals. This piece of IP is ever evolving based on current sales data, and has an algorithm that looks across a business and determines an indicative value to be used for our appraising businesses.
This tool is available to all LINK brokers, and is uncannily correct, often within 5% of the actual sale value of a business listed.
In addition we were awarded the Callaghan Innovation Growth Grant funding which is a $15m contract over three years to undertake research and development and increase our already advanced IP.
2 The largest business brokerage in the world
Having ~500 brokers worldwide gives a vendor an extensive sales team to be able to transact their business. In NZ alone, we are over double the size of our closest competitor which gives us specific advantages in how we can market and sell businesses.
Because of this scale, we have international conferences with the next one being in April 2019. At these conferences, we conduct a number of training sessions, have excellent guest speakers, create sessions to learn how the best brokers work, and have an enormous amount of fun.
3 The support of the New Zealand Government
In April this year, LINK was accepted as a NZTE Focus 700 customer.
Being a Focus 700 customer puts LINK in an exclusive group of the 700 largest export companies in New Zealand. For this privilege, we get priority access to NZTE’s services including market research, sales execution, operational excellence, investment management, design thinking, in-market immersion and the international growth fund. Our executive and board plan to take full advantage of these services to fuel our international growth.
4 Strong staff and broker ownership
In August 2017, LINK raised capital for specific acquisitions and growth initiatives which have proven very successful. Over 70% of the capital raise was filled by LINK brokers and staff.
5 Office and support model
Unlike a number of other business brokerages where only centralised support is offered, our business model is based upon offices with direct support staff on the ground to make our brokers lives as easy as possible. This enables our brokers to transact more businesses faster without compromising quality.
Each office has a Sales Manager who runs the office, conducts sales meetings, motivates brokers, reviews agreements, assists with moving businesses through DD, and in general support brokers to do a better job. Also within each office are office managers and a support team that undertake number of tasks for the brokers including writing & proofing information memorandums, advertising and marketing of a listing, deal management, and conversing with lawyers.
In addition we have invested heavily in our very own broker training academy which provides an “a to z” how to guide for business broking. All new brokers go through this academy on induction, and have full access at any time.
This model undoubtedly costs more, however we believe this model is a key part of our success in recruiting the best brokers in the market year in, year out.
6 Focused executive team and board
The executive team and board of the parent company is extremely focused on moving the needle of LINK. The communication structure between our teams is excellent, we are thorough in our planning, have a clear strategy, are decisive, and are not laboured by the corporate bureaucracy that holds many organisations back.
Every member of our executive team and board are shareholders in the company, whether it be existing shareholders, or shareholders who are investing as part of our current capital raise. Having skin in the game means we are razor sharp on what we need to do, and how we are going to get it done.
Written by Suneil Connor, LINK CFO