Sheri Spencer Bachman
Owners, Spencer Pest Services
“I truly believe when your financials are set up right, it sets you up for success and it sets you up for selling.”
Spencer Pest Services
Sheri Spencer Bachman
Halle Capital Management
March 31, 2021
“If you’re thinking about selling and you’re not using PCO Bookkeepers to do your books, consider it. Having your books set up correctly is huge. If your financials aren’t set up correctly, you may not get the price you’re hoping for.”
–Sheri Spencer Bachman
PCO M&A Specialists Facilitates a Smooth Sale for a Family Business
In 1990 Sheri Spencer Bachman joined her father’s company to help him “computerize the books.” She fell in love with the customer service aspect of Spencer Pest Services and never left. In 2005 she took over operations, and she bought the business in 2011.
Sheri’s daughter, Laura Corbin, represents the third generation of the family to run Spencer Pest. Laura came on board in 2010. She took over as operations manager in 2012 and was promoted to COO in 2016.
Suffice it to say, Spencer Pest is a family business. When the time came last summer for Sheri to exit the business to focus on her passion — coaching other pest control business owners — family values were front and center in her decision-making process.
“It’s very personal when you’re selling the business you’ve been in for 30 years and it’s a family business,” Sheri says. “It’s emotional.”
She knew from her previous experience selling branches that the due diligence process was grueling, and she didn’t want to do it alone this time around.
“I remember working 12- to 18-hour days trying to compile the information – staying after hours to pull things so the team didn’t know,” she says. “It was very time consuming.”
She had worked with Dan Gordon and PCO Bookkeepers on the accounting side, so she knew she could trust him and the team at its sister firm PCO M&A Specialists. Sheri also called around to peers who had sold their businesses through Dan.
“I got good feedback on Dan and decided I was most comfortable going with him,” she says, noting it was an “easy process” once they got the ball rolling.
“He set the expectations of how it was going to work, he knew who the players were and he would call me back if I had questions,” she says. “We discussed who’d we put it out there to and we came up with a game plan.”
For Spencer Pest, a requirement of the sale was that Laura would stay on board. “She wanted to continue working and being involved in the business, and we also knew that by her staying, the rest of the team would stay,” Sheri says.
PCO M&A Specialists brought multiple offers to the table. Ultimately, the opportunity to sell to a private equity firm intrigued Sheri the most. She sold Spencer Pest to Halle Capital Management on March 31.
“We liked that they were different,” she says, noting the firm is new to the pest control industry. “They’re going to keep our brand and our people and use us as a platform company. The opportunity just seemed to make sense, and we’ve really been pleased so far.”
Looking back, Sheri is grateful that she had worked with PCO Bookkeepers on the accounting side of the business for more than five years. She knows that having her financials set up correctly was instrumental in getting a good deal.
“I truly believe when your financials are set up right, it sets you up for success and it sets you up for selling,” she says. “We would not have been set up that way had we not worked with Dan (on the accounting side), and we weren’t set up that way when I sold my other company.”
In addition to being set up for success, Sheri says the process went smoothly because Dan was familiar with her company from an accounting perspective and also because his team is proficient in pest management software programs. “I just had to share folders with them in Google Drive, and they went in and pulled everything they needed out of there, QuickBooks and ServSuite,” she says. “It was a lot easier than I expected.”