After 19 years selling businesses on the Sunshine Coast, the founder of Verified Businesses, David Bentley, feels the time is right to “pass the baton” to Verified’s longest serving broker and one of the most successful business brokers on the Coast, Craig Campbell. Although Bentley feels there’s still plenty of life left in him as a business broker, he’s more than happy to hand over to Craig and take a “role switch”. Bentley will remain selling businesses for a period, because that’s what he’s always enjoyed the most.

David says, “Handing over a business that you’ve started from scratch is never easy. You have a strong attachment to it, similar to a parent and their child. You’ve conceived the business, first in your mind, and then brought the plan to fruition. It’s then up to you, the founder, to make it succeed. There’s no one to help you and in the initial stages, it’s like climbing Mt Everest on roller skates. Profitability in the early months is a dream a long way in the future and the challenges faced are a real test to your character. Failure is always a threat, especially with overheads piling up with very little income being generated.”

The end goal is what drives you to persevere with dogged persistence. You then start the next phase, to build the business by employing a team. Now you face a whole new set of challenges with recruitment, training and mentoring the individual team members. After a few years and with your birthdays coming close to retirement age, thoughts of selling begin to creep into your thinking. If a ready, willing and able appears on the horizon, you have to consider this proposal. It’s hard to judge the right time to sell, especially if you know the business has so much growth potential, but the best time to sell is when the premium buyer appears. If you let him go, it may be months or even years before another buyer is in the market for your specific business. Some businesses have a very small market, because they need specific licences or skills. Business brokerages are one such business.

Craig Campbell the new principal of Verified Businesses comes with high recommendations from David Bentley the former owner. David says, “Craig offers a vast array of knowledge and skills for anyone selling their business to tap into; he’s been successful through staying focused on getting the job done for his clients, and as an accomplished business professional that actually walks the talk, he knows business sales inside out. More importantly, Craig’s experience in buying, successfully running franchises, establishing new businesses, re-inventing others, and selling his own small businesses over the past 30 years is invaluable and has provided him with the unique skill set.”

In his eight year as a business broker here on the Sunshine Coast, Craig attributes his success to owning and running his own business since his early 20’s, working with some of the best managers, entrepreneurs, and business brokers in the industry over many years, and being able to communicate effectively at all levels, across most industry sectors. Craig says, “I have been indeed fortunate to have been coached by and worked with some of the best brokers on the Coast over the years. And I have to say, David Bentley has augmented my success in the industry; his candid and very logical approach has helped us through many deals and has been the difference between getting a business to settlement, and providing the ultimate service to our vendors in selling their businesses.”

Highly experienced with a thorough understanding of the local economy developed over the last 18 years living and working on the Coast, Craig continues to perform at the highest levels, and is the quiet achiever who has successfully marketed and sold over 16mil dollars’ worth of businesses. He possesses an outstanding business problem solving ability and leaves no stone unturned when it comes to thoroughly understanding his clients’ businesses, honestly evaluating their likely selling ranges, and finding the right buyer! Consequently, he has a great following of past and present clients alike.

Craig is degree and MBA qualified and a Certified Practicing Business Broker, with hands-on experience in business development, and a broad range of management, marketing and communication skills across various sectors, such as manufacturing, education, software, finance and automotive. This first-hand knowledge of business from both the buyer and seller perspective ensures clients get the real deal. He believes ‘organisational alignment’ of all stakeholders, continuous improvement, correct product/service positioning, and making everything ‘as easy as possible for the customer’, are imperative to business success”.