If you spend much time at all reading about business values, you’ll quickly run across the terms “EBITDA” and “cash flow.” In many cases, they seem to be used interchangeably. But can they really be used in the same ways?
In this post, we’ll help you better understand EBITDA vs cash flow. Hopefully, the next time you come across either term, they won’t be confusing.
EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization) has become the standard value metric when it comes time to sell a business.
It is what both buyers and sellers look to in order to determine the value of the company in question. While many factors come into play when a business changes owners, nothing gives everyone involved a better snapshot of that company’s health and value than its EBITDA.
Generally speaking, the higher the EBITDA, the higher the price. Valuation companies like ours apply industry-standard multipliers to the EBITDA of the business being sold to arrive at its current market worth. That’s a simplified explanation, however, and things are rarely that clear cut.
A common phrase you hear in business is “you have to spend money to make money.”
Unfortunately, too many small business owners spend more money than they actually have…all in the name of getting their company off the ground or taking advantage of the next perfect opportunity. They hope that the money they bring in tomorrow will cover the money they’re spending today.
The end result of that kind of business strategy is a lot of debt.
One company owing money to another isn’t a cardinal sin of doing business. It happens all the time. For this post, we want to focus on how much debt is reasonable as a percentage of a company’s overall EBITDA (a common measure of cash flow derived as earnings before depreciation and taxes, depreciation, and amortization).
What if you had a quick way to measure how your company is performing from year to year?
An often-used phrase in business is that you can only “expect what you inspect.” If you aren’t regularly checking to see how well your company is doing, you are missing out on valuable information and quite possibly setting yourself up for trouble.
By using your business value as a benchmark, you can quickly check the pulse of your company and tell if it is generally healthy and improving year by year or has problems that need to be addressed.
Southard Financial is excited to announce an addition to our lineup of valuation experts that will give our clients yet another powerful partner when it comes to establishing accurate and professional valuations nationwide. Please welcome Ed Usalis to the Southard team!
“We know that our clients expect the most reliable valuations from us. And over the past 30 years we have set out to provide the absolute best experience for our clients,” says Mark Orndorff. “So when we met Ed, we knew he would be a perfect compliment to our team.”