I have written this article because I have found that a lot of people who are in the market for buying a scuba diving business have been caught out by additional costs that were not accounted for when they started.
Besides the obvious cost of the flying half way round the world to inspect a scuba dive operation in the tropics, there are other costs involved when selling a business that you should be aware of.
This is one of the up front costs that can really mount up, especially if the dive centre is not anywhere near your current location.
You’ll need to engage a solicitor, lawyer or whatever legal advise is available in the country to help you prepare contract for sale of the business. Depending on if a property lease is involved, costs for these services range between US$1,500 and US$8,000 depending on complicity of the purchase. For some large businesses this cost can be in the tens of thousands of dollars.
remember that the law in the new country may be SIGNIFICANTLY different from your own. Don;t underestimate the difference some of these laws can have on your ‘ownership’ of your new business, especially as
Talk to at least a couple of legal representative prior to engaging them and obtain estimate for they services.
In some cases stock or plant valuation will be necessary and depending on the agreement, the cost of this could be paid partially or in full by you. Costs start from $200 and can be up to several thousand of dollars for larger businesses.
Lease transfer fees and charges
If as part of the business there is transfer of the leases for plant and equipment you may have to pay re-assignment fees, check this during the preparation stage with your leasing company.
All payables incurred by the business on a day to day basis and unpaid on the date of the settlement will have to be paid by you or your company.
All tax liabilities incurred by the business on a day to day basis and unpaid on the date of the settlement will have to be paid by you or your company.
All workers entitlements such as unpaid leave, long service leave etc. will have to be paid by you on the date of settlement.
Work Permits and Permits to Reside
Immigration is about to become part of your life as well, may as well get used to it. You will be a stranger in a strange land for quite a while after arriving. In all probability for YEARS after you arrive. It doesn’t matter if you’ve visited as a tourist for 2 months a year for the past ten. REALLY!