Originally Published: August 5, 2010 10:01 p.m.
Q & A with Matthew Uhler, principal and designated broker of WCI Brokers at 3029 Dollar Mark Way, Prescott. The office is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Call 445-1144 or visit www.wcibusinessbrokers.com.
Q: How did you get into this business?
A: "Many years ago, I owned a small business in New Hampshire for about 10 years that employed about 40 people. When I decided I wanted to live in Arizona permanently, I divided my company into two divisions and sold one to one of my managers and used a business broker to help me sell the other division.
"This was how I was introduced to the business brokerage industry. About 12 years ago, I started working with WCI Brokers from their Scottsdale office. In 2008 I purchased the Northern Arizona territory of WCI brokers and became the owner and designated broker."
Q: What service do you provide in the community?
A: "As a business brokerage firm employing six licensed independent agents and four great staff members, we specialize in helping people buy, sell and finance business opportunities throughout the state, but primarily in northern Arizona. Since most people have never sold a business, we typically start by helping the seller to understand the process of preparing their business for sale and how they can build value.
"In many cases, this process occurs several years before they ultimately decide they are ready to sell their business. Once they are ready to sell, we prepare a marketing package for their company and market it as confidentially as possible. When we find the right buyer for the business, we work with the parties to obtain financing and then facilitate all of the details that need to be completed to close the transaction and for the buyer, to be ready to take over the business."
Q: What is the key to your business longevity?
A: "I think the key to our longevity is that we stay apprised of the many laws, Small Business Administration financing requirements and tax issues that affect the small business owners we work with.
"This allows us to provide a valuable service people need in any economy. We take our business very seriously because in most of our transactions, there is a lot of money on the line for the buyer and seller."
Q: What's the best business advice you've given and received?
A: "A mentor/friend of mine told me the key to a successful business is simple: Find out what people want, get it, and give it to them in a way that is better than your competition."
Q: What's something unique about you?
A: "I think what makes me unique in the business brokerage industry is that I have owned, purchased and sold many of my own businesses, so I am aware of what it is like to be a buyer and seller of a business opportunity. I have gained a lot of experience participating as a broker in more than 250 business sales during my career."
Q: What's something unique about your business?
A: "One of the aspects of my business that is unique and that I love is that we deal with almost every type of business in every industry you could imagine. As a result, we have the opportunity and the obligation to become educated about all of these businesses and industries. I can't think of another business that provides the opportunity for such a challenge or continual education."
Q: How are you handling the economy?
A: "We are focusing on the basics of what we know works in our industry. When we have a new marketing idea or system, we test the waters very carefully before we jump in."
Q: If you could take a week away, what would you do?
A: "I recently went to New Hampshire with my 4-year-old son for our fourth annual father/son trip. I really love spending time with him away from our day-to-day routines so we can experience new things together."