Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Business partner to-be buys without me.

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  • #1033399 Reply
    avatarBittergaymaek
    Guest

    Eh, the reality is that you simply don’t have the funds to buy the business. Period. I mean, wowee… gee whiz! I wish my friends would buy me the business of my dreamw and give me 60% percent of it. But good luck with that ever happening.

    I mean —- seriously? Your expectations were pretty fucking farfetched.

    #1033400 Reply
    avataranonymousse
    Participant

    I have to agree I don’t know why you’d think your experience of working there is worth 60% of the business. I mean sure, your friend went behind your back after you convinced him to buy it, but you were trying to screw him over a bit, right? Do you seriously think someone paying for 100% of a business is going to want to give you 60% of it right off the bat? Your expectations were really off the mark. He had the money and you didn’t. Unfortunately, you didn’t have the money right when your boss decided to sell. I’m sorry but I think the best thing would be to walk away as drama free as possible.

    #1033403 Reply
    avatarJeremy (OP)
    Guest

    I get your point karebear.. if they had approached me about wanting to buy alone, I would not have taken it and walked with it. I would have fought to be partners/prove to them I could do whatever it is they think I can’t. They have stated on many occasions that I’m the “brains” of the works of the shop. It’s a specific niche shop that known for being extremely knowledgeable in the services that they offer. As it stands right now I and the previous owner are the only ones who know squat about it. The friend had only started learning about things 5 months ago, and still knows almost nothing and comes to me about it all. Basically we all know that I’m an asset to the team. I fully believe that the shop will struggle once I leave. The friend doesn’t know the market they should be targeting or anything. They just saw the money they could get and signed.

    So, sure, maybe the previous owner did what he thought was his best financial decision. (Selling isn’t even his best financial decision. He sold the shop for dirt cheap anyways with a net loss) but in the long run, this friend has screwed his chances of this business becoming very successful, and may have even doomed it to fail. There is no replacing 10s of years of experience and a relevant degree to top it off.

    If the friend was in on the purchase the whole time and I was the flaky one, it might make more sense. But it was me who started it all. Friend backed out for a good month or two, I talked them back into it, then they started to flake again before ghosting the whole deal from me. From how I see it, if they wanted me to not get upset, they would have told me their intention from the get-go or got my opinion on it, or even let me sweeten the deal for them before just straight up purchasing alone.

    #1033404 Reply
    avatarJeremy (OP)
    Guest

    Okay, maybe I didn’t explain the purchasing part. The whole thing is more complicated than I made it sound, I apologize. From the start, it was going to be friend, friends wife, and I. THEY decided together at the start to give me 60%. I would have most if not all liability and do a large chunk of the work. I then talked them down the other way to let them get a bigger chunk. We would all be equally liable. All have collateral in the business, it was well fleshed out more complicated than that and agreed upon no complaints… the money was more or less a loan we were going to apply for from the friends family business, that they just knew they could apply for. Not the friend paying it with “free money”. I would have also had to apply for the loan and pay back as well. Friend backed out so it went back to asking the shop owner for compromise and striking deals. The deal we settled on was a several thousand $ deposit and owning a % of the business that he would then keep the other % until the rest is paid off. I, being nice and wanting to give friend fair chance in the deal, let friend in on it. (My mistake because owner was willing at the time to let me go alone). Owner then made up some bull** story about needing to talk to advisors about the deal to make sure it’s a good idea to go through with. I waited about a month for replies from these “advisors” meanwhile owner says they’re slow and he will call them to check status yadayada. Friend randomly asks at another point if I wanted 10% of the business while he gets 90%. And I pretty much said let’s talk about another deal because I’d be making less with 10% than with a standard wage. I told them to was fully ready to dedicate a large amount of time, all my funds, so we should meet up and talk about it. And friend at that point started to ghost the whole deal. No meetings, refusing to talk about it. Then another few weeks and they had already signed the papers. So it’s not like any real deal was set, nor was I like 60% or I’m out. It was still in the process of changing and shifting the second time around, and never once did they threaten to buy by themselves if 10% or whatever was denied. I think communication from friend was extremely poor and unnecessary.

    Not saying every decision I made along the way was the right one. Still a super young adult here who makes plenty of mistakes!

    #1033455 Reply
    avatargolfer.gal
    Guest

    Ultimately, it’s time to walk away. Your friend knew he was risking you leaving by cutting you out and he was ok with that. What happens to the store at this point can’t be your concern anymore. I know it’s disappointing, but you need to start focusing on yourself now and consider the store a done deal and simply a job you are actively trying to leave. Part of business savvy is protecting all of your assets, including your time and energy, and giving them away for free to this shop means you have much less to invest in your future and your own pursuits.

    Once you’ve got another job and kept it professional by giving the proper amount of notice, feel free to block your ex friend on all platforms. If he wants your advice, say no or work out an hourly consulting rate. Do not give him guidance for free. He’s not your friend and you don’t owe him anything. You’ve got drive and you’re still really young, take some time to build your credit, get a little more experience somewhere new, and save some money, then look for another opportunity to own or start your own business.

    #1033461 Reply
    avatarLisforLeslie
    Guest

    I would not offer to provide consulting services because I am a rather petty person. However, if you do choose to offer it then

    1. You should make sure there is a written contract for services provided and fees owed.
    2. You should establish your billing rate – I recommend about 10x what you earn hourly now. I’m not kidding. Your time is very valuable. Your friend purchased a shop likely based on the assumption that you wouldn’t walk away and you would be there to help run it. And in doing so he fucked you over. So if you decide to help him then you should make it very worth your while.
    3. You have a little money saved up, so hire a lawyer who specializes in contracts. Believe me, as someone who spends too much time writing contracts, it will be very worth it. The lawyers and specialists have saved my tush many many times.

    As for the 60/40 split – with no contracts in place, it doesn’t really matter. The point was that you and your friend put a plan in place and instead your friend went behind your back and cut you out of ownership entirely but likely expected to get the benefit of your knowledge and experience.

    #1033477 Reply
    avataranonymousse
    Participant

    You just convinced your friend to buy a business whose owner just sold for a loss to the only interested buyer.

    Maybe it’s a good thing this didn’t work out for you.

    #1033508 Reply
    avatarKate
    Keymaster

    Right, that’s what I’m saying. Why do you want a business that had no buyers and eventually sold at a huge loss? Because it’s a place and a job you’re comfortable with. This is a signal that it’s time to branch out.

    #1033679 Reply
    avatarJill
    Guest

    Count yourself lucky. Your friendship to this person was bound to deteriorate eventually, considering how he handled this situation. At least now you are free to move on from the situation easily, without being entangled financially with him. Be more cautious about mixing business and friendship going forward, especially if you feel like you struggle to stand up for yourself.

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