Management Buyout

Meaning Of Management Buyout

Management buyout (MBO) is an act of a company’s management purchasing the operations and assets of the business. This concept appeals to the higher-level managers owing to the greater rewards they will receive by owning the business rather than serving as employees. MBO primarily takes place in private businesses where the owner wishes to retire. Large businesses that wish to sell out the redundant divisions of their entity also opt for MBO. People often get confused between the terms management buy-in and management buyout. However, the terms management buy-in and management buyout appear similar the difference lies in the buyer’s position. In the case of a management buy-out, the management team is hired from outside the company.

On understanding the meaning of MBO, let’s look at the process for commencing the same.

Process Of Management Buyout

Management buyouts are a popular form of exit strategy adopted by both large corporates and owner-managed businesses. After considering if the MBO is suitable for the owner, a number of steps need to be commenced.

Process of Management Buyout

The following are the eight steps in the management buyout process:

Assess the Opportunity

The buyer should be sure about going ahead with the MBO. An investment equivalent to a year’s salary will be required. If the finance is borrowed, the repayment will be manageable as the salary can increase in the future to help pay off dues. However, the buyer will have to bear the risk of capital investment in the business. Full commitment towards the business is required at the buyer’s end.

Assess the Viability of the Deal

Analyze the growth prospects of the business. The buyer should also work out a plan for wealth maximization. This will enable the buyer to grow the value of his shareholding in the business.

Also Read: Management Buy-in

Create a Credible Business Plan

The buyer should draft a worthy business plan. Decisions should be chalked out on actions to be taken once the deal is done. A good business plan will determine the initial budget needed for the business’s operations.

Make an Agreement with the Seller

Negotiations with the seller are done. A middleman may be involved to negotiate and reach a common ground as these negotiations may get uptight.

Raise Finance

Raising finance for the deal is a time-consuming process. Striking a good deal is essential. Raising capital from an external source is equivalent to developing a business partner. Thus the buyer must make a wise decision.

Conduct Due Diligence

Financiers may require due diligence to support the process. Therefore, the buyer must conduct due diligence for the company.

Close the Deal

The buyer seals the deal and enjoys benefits. Hard work will follow in the days to come.

Build the Company

The company is in the ownership of the buyer. If the deal is conducted wisely and at the right price, it serves as a great beginning. The appointment of a good adviser may help in further operations of the entity.

After gaining an insight into the process of MBO, let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages for the same.

Advantages Of Management Buyout

The following are the advantages of management buyouts:

  • MBO enables better and more effective management.
  • It encourages better performance and commitment from the members involved.
  • It leads to the reorganization of the organizational structure. This thereby results in the identification and removal of deficiencies in the operations.

Disadvantages Of Management Buyout

The following are disadvantages of management buyout:

  • MBO requires the fixing of individual responsibilities and goals. However, an organization functions with a group effort.
  • MBO is a time-consuming process.
  • It compares the ratings of individuals. However, this may deem to be unfair as every individual has different goals.
  • MBO requires a level of trust throughout the hierarchy of the organization. This isn’t easy to achieve in the corporate world.
  • It is suitable for professional and managerial jobs. It is not applicable for worker-level jobs.

Let’s move on and see an example of MBO to gain a clearer view of the concept.

Example Of Management Buyout

In the year 2011, the management of Menzies Hotel purchased the entity. Lloyds Banking Group provided financial assistance in the MBO. The hotel went through financial restructuring and formed a new company, Cordial Hotels, which is majority-owned by its management.

Also Read: Acquisition


A management buyout ensures a smooth continuation for the entity. The transfer of ownership is to the management, who already has a good understanding of the potential held by the company. The management is already well-known by suppliers, financial partners, and clients. These multiple benefits lead to profit maximization for the entity. However, the management buyout structure holds a setback as well. The managers are required to make a transition from being employees to owners. This transition requires a change in mindsets. Not all managers can become successful owners.

Keep reading Corporate Restructuring to learn about various other strategies.

Sanjay Borad

Sanjay Bulaki Borad

Sanjay Borad is the founder & CEO of eFinanceManagement. He is passionate about keeping and making things simple and easy. Running this blog since 2009 and trying to explain "Financial Management Concepts in Layman's Terms".

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