Buyer Activity Through The Sales Process

Understanding Buyer Numbers Through Each Stage of Selling a Practice


I am looking to sell - How many buyers are out there? How many will I need to meet?

I am looking to buy - What’s the level of competition? Does it vary by fee size?


As many of you in our community will already know, DMY are big fans of data. In our April market data release we highlighted that each accounting or bookkeeping practice that DMY lists in a metropolitan location receives an average of 86 enquiries from interested parties. Understanding what this looks like in more detail is key for anyone looking to sell, or for buyers looking to compete and win that prized acquisition. For the first time we have completed a deep dive into buyer activity on individual deals through each stage of the deal process.



We randomly selected four recent sales of accounting practices in metropolitan locations across Australia. Fee sizes ranged from $250,000 to $1.5 million. 

For each sale we analysed the level of buyer activity through each distinct stage of the sale process, ie:

  1. Initially enquired, and received a De-identified Practice Summary
  2. Signed an NDA and received a Full Information Memorandum
  3. Expressed interest in meeting the Vendor
  4. Met the Vendor
  5. Received a draft Heads of Agreement


The Data

Below you will see the number of buyers “flowing” through each stage of the deal pipeline from top to bottom.




Key Findings

  1. The market for buying fees is buoyant at every fee level.
  2. Buyers know what they are looking for. Typically only around one third proceed to obtaining a Full Information Memorandum after reviewing a De-identified Practice Summary.
  3. Buyer competition to meet Vendors is intense. There are more than twice as many buyers wanting to meet the Vendor as the Vendor is prepared to meet.
  4. In a well managed process where buyers are pre-qualified, Vendors are meeting between five and seven buyers in order to decide on a preferred buyer.
  5. There is not always one stand-out candidate. Up to four parties have received a draft Heads of Agreement (although two parties is the most common) from which an agreement is executed with one party.


The Wrap

Whether you are looking to sell or buy, having a deeper understanding of how the market operates is key to unlocking a successful outcome. Opinions are cheap and plenty. At DMY we prefer to let the data talk.  To discuss these findings in more detail and what they mean specifically for your situation, contact DMY’s Directors below:


Mark Emney

Mobile: 0434 079 530

Daniel Jones

Mobile: 0401 493 773