Industry/sector: Business services
Date founded: 2014
Founders: Sean Mallon
Location: Leeds An accomplished business sales broker, Sean Mallon is the man behind Bizdaq. His seven years of service leading a brokerage consultancy helped over 1,200 entrepreneurs see the value in their enterprises. In 2007, when he was just 21 and fresh out of university, Mallon used the experience he had gained from working at a brokerage firm to launch his own. Showing entrepreneurial flair that he had come to support, he generated business from the Yellow Pages and a telephone and laptop that belonged to his parents. The business broker took on a different path in January 2014, however, when he launched Bizdaq. Using ecommerce, the online marketplace is designed to support the sale, discovery and purchase of British businesses across desktop, smartphones and tablets.
Despite the digital format, the variety of companies using the service vary greatly and include anything from a coffee shop in London with a £52,000 turnover to a Stockport valeting service with a £20,000 turnover. Bizdaq is built to help business owners through each step of the selling process, while buyers can search for acquisitions based on location, cost, turnover, asking price and other variables – just as if they were making a purchase for shoes on eBay. Indeed, that was the inspiration for Mallon, whose simple observation saw him recognise the way people could purchase goods had changed entirely – except when it came to small businesses. The idea is that SMEs using the platform will be able to make significant savings on fees that would usually be charged by transfer agents, which can take around a 15 per cent commission. Comparatively, Bizdaq expects most users will pay an average of £500 to secure a buyer and complete the sale. The Leeds-based firm raised £1m in February 2015 that saw Tim Whitworth, founder of clothing chain Republic – he left the firm for a £300m payout in 2010 – among the investors. Bizdaq hopes to have 5,000 seller users in 2016 and 20,000 by 2018 with double that for buyers, supported by scaling in the US and Australia. By Zen Terrelonge
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