Beware the Sirens!
To escape the Sirens, Odysseus’ sailors plugged their ears with beeswax and lashed him to the mast under strict instruction not to release him. He resisted “the voice sweet as the honeycomb,” and deadly promises of joy, sailing on to reclaim his kingdom.
Frequently prospective business buyers are, like Odysseus, tempted by a seller’s alluring song. The pull is to short cut disciplined inquiry, embrace the “song” and execute the purchase hastily. Beware the Sirens!
Several years ago a friend convinced his buddy, “Mark,” to enlist me as he considered buying a well-known local business. When we first met he was bewitched and had ignored some critical aspects of the business. Realizing his initial oversight, we engaged with the seller, pursuing clarity. The seller’s asking price would have chained Mark to an impossible debt. Ignoring the song we were able to protect his interests.
Are you or a friend considering an acquisition? I urge you to guard against the lure of the Sirens. Refuse the urge to act precipitously. Proceed purposefully, alertly and persistently.
If I can help, give me a call. I’ll come with beeswax.
John R. Bise
Accredited Valuation Analyst