SEEK Business, Australia’s leading business-for-sale platform, has experienced consistently high levels of interest in people wanting to buy a business.
Website traffic increased by 30 per cent in May compared with pre-pandemic levels, while inquiries on businesses-for-sale advertisements grew by 46 per cent over the same period.
Business buyers are motivated to not only take control of their own destiny, but also by the prospect of being able to create a legacy, pursue their passions and build a financially secure future for themselves and their families.
We’ve all read the stories of how people have created successful businesses from scratch, but the challenge with this approach lies in the unknowns and risks.
Buying an existing business, however, can be a cost effective and less risky avenue to realising your ambitions of working for yourself and taking control of your working life.
Buying an established business means that there is usually stock on hand that can be valued, trained staff, an existing customer base, supplier relationships, fitted-out premises and financial records to scrutinise.
Of course, there are still risks, which is why savvy buyers will always seek professional advice and conduct thorough due diligence on any target business.
If done right, buying a business can be a smart way to accelerate the process of getting into business for the first time, or to grow an existing business through acquisition.
So, where is demand growing?
SEEK Business currently has more than 18,000 business opportunities advertised on its website – from gardening franchises for just $10,000, to top-end wineries for $2 million-plus, as well as everything in between.
Over the last two years, interest in essential services industries has grown, with inquiries for businesses in the health and medical industry increasing by 17 per cent this year, and a staggering 65 per cent when compared to pre-pandemic figures (2022 versus 2019). The intensifying spotlight on the sector as a result of the pandemic will likely have played a role in this spike in interest.
For other potential business owners, pursuing a change in lifestyle or a passion project has become more important.
For example, inquiries in the sport, fitness and adventure industries increased by 54 per cent compared with pre-pandemic figures. And despite the impact the pandemic had on the hospitality industry, coffee, café and restaurant businesses remain a popular choice, with inquiries having risen by 28 per cent.
Regardless of where you are in your career journey, there has never been a better time to make a change. For some, that may mean a new role in a new company; for others, it’s about taking the leap into business ownership.
Because small businesses are the heartbeat of every postcode around the country, when they thrive, communities thrive.
Lucia Vuong is the head of SEEK Business.