"Rupert Ashe has created a succinct, readable, practical and scrupulously honest guide to the realities of selling a marketing services agency. His huge depth of experience comes through loud and clear in both the knowledge he shares and the advice he gives in this book, and this is as close as you will get to a manual for the successful acquisition of your agency.
Nothing is quite as scary for the entrepreneur as the acquisition process; having mastered your marketing discipline over many years, established a great client base and built up a really great agency you are suddenly plunged into a void of ignorance. This book demystifies the strange metamorphosis of an agency going through an acquisition and calmly leads your thinking through a process that seems simultaneously capable of delivering your greatest dreams and manifesting your worst fears.”
Julian Tanner, Founder and CEO, Axicom (a subsidiary of WPP PLC)
“Selling my agency is probably the most stressful thing I have ever done (it beats marriage, divorce, having kids and moving house hands down!). Building a business is a deeply personal thing to do – very similar to having a child – it’s born and then you watch it grow up and become strong and you take enormous pride in its achievements. To then put it up for adoption is a wrench to say the least! Having a good advisor is the core of steel that keeps the deal between buyer and seller sane. Impartial advice, focus on what’s important, identification of ‘deal breakers’ plus many more benefits can be found in a good advisor. It allows the seller to understand the needs of the buyer without the humiliation of constantly having to ask them dumb questions. Rupert’s book would have been gold dust in the time leading up to the sale of my company (and certainly would have saved me some of the fees I paid him!). Reading it seven years after I sold my company, I felt a swell of pride that we managed between us to do an exemplary deal. So I guess he knows what he’s talking about…..
Catherine Warne, Co-Founder and CEO, Red Door Communications Group (a subsidiary of Creston Plc)
“Rupert Ashe’s book is essential reading for any aspiring entrepreneur in the world of marketing. The sale process is part art, part science and can be quite confusing, so being armed with as much knowledge as possible is a pre-requisite to a good outcome. Selling an agency successfully is not easy; if you are out-of-step in any part of the choreography, you can fall down and lose value. Being mentally prepared and with the right advisors at hand will make the process as painless as possible.”
James Hilton, Co-Founder and Joint Managing Director, M&C Saatchi Mobile (a subsidiary of M&C Saatchi PLC)
“When selling your company, you need your guardian angel at your side to guide you through the complex, lengthy and stressful process. This book is vital reading for any owner of an agency looking to sell. It provides a solid base of understanding to that you can appoint the right adviser, find the right buyer and achieve the right result.”
Liz Shanahan, Senior Managing Director, FTI Strategic Communications
Rupert Ashe ACA,
Director, D5 Capital
Rupert Ashe is a serial entrepreneur who has started and sold four
businesses as well as advising on approximately eighty capital
Rupert qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Deloitte before working in
their corporate finance department. He entered the media industry
in the 1990s with the co-founding of Focus Communications, a financial
public relations and investor relations consultancy. At Focus, he advised
on over fifty IPOs and M&A transactions, including the de-mutualisation
and flotation of Alliance & Leicester plc, the de-merger of Schroders plc,
as well as a number of flotations on AIM and the Full List of the London
Stock Exchange. He subsequently sold the agency to Grey Global Group in
Between 2001 and 2011 he ran Wall House Consulting, a corporate finance
boutique based in London which advised on over 30 mergers & acquisitions
and funding rounds, largely in the media & marketing services sectors.
Wall House Consulting also helped to create Build-A-Bear Workshop (UK),
the award-winning entertainment retailer which was sold in 2006 as part of
a $41m transaction, and Videojug Corporation Limited, the pioneering
video-on-demand learning channel. In both companies, Rupert was a founder
investor and CFO. Notable M&A transactions at Wall House Consulting
included the sale of medical communications agency Red Door to Creston
plc; the sale of technology communications agency Axicom to WPP plc; and
the sale of mobile advertising agency Inside Mobile to M&C Saatchi plc.
Wall House Consulting was acquired by D5 Capital in 2011.
Rupert has in-depth experience of financial services, marketing services,
digital publishing and high energy, rapid growth start-ups.