Assessing Business Value in Salt Lake City

Have you ever wondered how much your business is actually worth? Assessing the value of your Salt Lake City business can be more complicated than just working out the value of its assets. While the precise “value” of a business is a somewhat nebulous concept, there are consistent methods of assessment that can set you on the right track if you’re trying to find the value of your business. This might seem complicated, but we can help. At Redwood Valuation, we built our foundation on years of experience that we leverage to assist our customers seeking business valuations.

409a Business Valuation Services in Salt Lake City

Call Redwood Valuation Partners for your next business valuation (206) 660-1295

Top Reasons to Seek a Business Valuation

There are a myriad of reasons to get your business valued, but perhaps the most obvious one is in order to see how much it will sell for. Don’t try to go into business negotiations about selling a business before you’ve gotten a valuation from a skilled accountant who’s an expert in the field.

A business valuation can also help show you where your business’ value comes from. There are as many factors involved in the value of a business as there are businesses themselves. A local business that is important to the community in Salt Lake City may have a high value for that particular community, but not for a potential buyer. Likewise, a business that seems like a tiny startup could have a ton of hidden value for the right buyer. It comes down to the details.

It’s imperative, then, that your business valuation is handled by professionals. Getting your business valued requires knowledge of finance, tax law, venture capital and the audit process, as well as of your business. But the benefits of a business valuation come in many forms, from stock compensation to expenses to selling prices. But the reasons and advantages of a valuation are different for every circumstance. If you need help determining if a business valuation is right for your circumstances, get a free consultation from Redwood.

What Approaches Are There to Business Valuation?

An accounting doing a business valuation will likely take one of three main approaches to assessing the value of a business. While there may be other approaches, these three encompass the main methods of assessing a business’ value. These methods apply to an array of businesses, whether they’re in Salt Lake City or elsewhere. Each business has its own particulars that will ultimately determine the approach that is the most appropriate for it.

Determining Value Based on Assets

There are several asset-based approaches possible for business valuation. The aim of an asset-based approach is to total the investments of a business. An accountant going forward with an asset-based mindset is theoretically attempting to imagine what it would cost to set up another, identical business. This reveals what that original business is worth (what kinds of assets it has) and what liabilities it has. The next step involves balancing the assets and liabilities in order to calculate how much value the business holds.

It sounds straightforward, but there are hidden complexities. The difficulty lies in the details, where figuring out the worth of a business and sorting through assets and liabilities becomes more complicated. Typically, one of two methods will be chosen for proceeding: either a going concern asset-based approach or a liquidation asset-based approach.

The first option is a going concern asset-based approach. Simply put, the accountant can subtract the value of any liabilities from the assets that the business has. A liquidation approach to determining worth is concerned with paying off liabilities before figuring out the value of a business. After a real liquidation, the business would receive cash; this now becomes the business’s value in a valuation.

The type of asset-based approach you choose depends on your business. There are other approaches if focusing on assets is not right for your situation and goals. As one example, a business that is owned in the name of a single person �” a sole proprietorship �” should be advised not to take this approach. A corporation, however, could find value in an assessment that is asset-based, as its assets are owned by the entire company and not one person.

Market-Based Approach

It can be useful in a valuation to look at the bigger picture and see what a business is worth compared to the rest of the market. This includes looking at other businesses in Salt Lake City. Viewing your business side-by-side with other, similar ventures can provide crucial information for figuring out the value of a business.

An approach that is concerned with the market as a whole takes a much more detailed view of factors outside of just the details of your business’s finances. An accountant using this approach will try to determine the fair market value of your business and what a buyer is likely to pay for it in the current climate.

It would be great if the sort of information necessary for this approach was easy to obtain, but it is not always the case that competing businesses will divulge the necessary figures. Non-competition clauses and private information can hinder this approach, making it difficult or potentially even impossible to get the information necessary for this type of valuation.

Making a Valuation Based on Income or Earnings

This approach to business valuation looks at potential and future value in order to draw conclusions. An income-based approach tries to use current income and earnings to predict how much a business will be worth in the future.

Obviously, this invites an element of risk in that the accountant or valuator is attempting to determine value based on a predication. Some of this uncertainty is offset by the ability to use concrete data to calculate this valuation. Often, a valuator will “normalize” current earnings, removing abnormal costs and windfalls, to try to get a reliable set of figures to work with. Additionally, capitalization factors may indicate abnormalities in the market itself that should be considered during a valuation.

Again, sole proprietorship and the exact style of business can impact the ultimate valuation here. If a business is strongly linked with its owner and that owner sells or leaves the business, an evaluation based on past performance could lose its validity depending on how customers react to the change.

Types of Valuations

A valuation has benefits beyond just figuring out what a business is worth and there is therefore a lot of variety in types of valuations. A business valuation is not the only type of assessment that is possible. Someone with a patent, for example, may also seek a valuation of their property.

Getting a 409A Valuation

A 409A valuation is conducted for the purpose of evaluating the stocks associated with the company. Stocks are frequently given to employees and contractors as part of their earnings from working. Such businesses need a 409A valuation because that stock is considered a form of income offered in one year but paid out in a different year.

This sounds complicated. It simply means those stocks have to be accounted for. Businesses who need this form of valuation need it in order to determine the fair market value of their business. The fair market value determined by this valuation is a benchmark at or above which employees given stock must be able to sell. Other deferred compensation that requires a 409A valuation includes salary deferral arrangements and bonus plans the company issues.

Sometimes it is a matter of compliance with the law to get a 409A valuation for your business. And if you’ve already gotten a 409A valuation, ensure you are getting re-evaluated once a year and/or any time your company closes a new funding round, in accordance with the law.

An accountant such as the ones at Redwood can be a crucial ally in trying to sort through the 409A valuation process any time you find you need to do one. A Redwood valuator will know the ins and outs of this type of valuation, as well as the best approach for you and your business as you undergo this process.

Business Valuations/Looking at Business Valuations

A business valuation is a general term and can be suitable for a myriad of situations, including during negotiations, while planning a business or during entity conversations. You may be hoping to see how much you could make by selling your company. Or you might be hoping to assess your tax liability by looking at your business’ value.

Equity and enterprise valuations are best handled by a talented accountant. At Redwood, we’ve seen our clients’ needs expand as our own business has expanded. Regardless of your specific reasons for seeking out a business valuation, we can work with you to reach your goals. Perhaps you want to ensure compliance with tax reporting or, conversely, find the fair market value of your business.

IRS regulations, business needs and finance are complex fields that call for knowledge and specialization. You know your business, but evaluating your business against all applicable laws, regulations and financial considerations takes an expert in the field of business valuation.

How to Assess IP and Patents

Finding the value of intellectual property and patents is a specialized field. Most businesses do have some sort of intangible property that want to protect and valuate, though. Taxes are complex when it comes to IP and patents, but it is also important to make sure trade secrets and trademarks can be protected. But you might also seek an IP and patent valuation in order to plan, secure a merger or acquisition, or during litigation.

Make sure your patent or intellectual property is protected by understanding what it’s worth on the market. It is sometimes complicated to find the value of these intangible assets. But the value of IP and patents cannot be understated, especially in recent times when so much of a business’s value comes from these assets in particular.

Purchase Price Allocations (ASC 805)

Another requirement businesses encounter is ASC 805. During a purchase or acquisition, businesses seek to find their fair market value, including their intangible assets and liabilities, to bring to the transaction. Of course, the overall goal is to figure out the purchase price for an acquisition.

The goal of a purchase price allocation is to tease apart the pieces of a business, such as liabilities and assets, to find its fair market value. Sometimes a business is sold in pieces and in such cases it’s important to find the value of those pieces before any transaction takes place.

The Last Word on Business Valuations

Come to Redwood Valuation Partners when the time comes for your business valuation. Whether your business is in Salt Lake City or somewhere else entirely, we can help you find the value of your business or intellectual property and stay in compliance with the tax code and other laws and regulations.

Knowing the fair market value of your business can help your future. This may be because you intend to sell your company or because you want to stay in compliance with 409A. Maybe you are seeking a business valuation for tax reasons or to assess the value of a patent. The intricacies can seem overwhelming. A helping hand through the process of business valuation can make the process easier. Our team has worked for years in business, finance and tax issues, allowing us to meet the needs of a wide range of businesses.

We understand the ins and outs of venture capital and auditing and take a teamwork-focused approach. Our valuation associates and analysts have worked in their field for years, becoming respected experts. We understand that many of our clients come from high-pressure startups and growth-focused companies with tight deadlines. We value your time; let us minimize the burden of complicated valuation details while you focus on what you know best �” your business.

Our principles when working with clients include intense focus, long experience and grounded expertise, no matter the cause for the valuation. We go beyond the standard valuation to offer a free consultation, as well as audit defense and customized reports. We can assist you from the very beginning if you don’t know where to start. And our customized reports will include all the detail you need to make business decisions based on your valuation. The comprehensive valuation report will include subjective and objective factors relevant to your particular business. Plus, you can take one less burden off your plate with audit defense that guarantees audit defense at any time without high additional costs.

In the end, if you need a business valuation, you will likely need help with that valuation. Get Redwood’s experienced team to assist you as you work through a business valuation for any reason. Find out how to get started with a consultation.


Our clients have direct access to Redwood’s managing partners and directors. You know your business better than anyone, and the valuation process includes subjective assessments that require your input. We guide you through this process, save your time, and allow you to focus on what matters – growing your business. Get a quality company appraisal in Salt Lake City, UT.


The Redwood team has performed many IRC 409A Valuation Seattle engagements, and we offer a wide variety of business appraisals to Seattle. Other services include ASC 805 valuation (purchase price allocations), IP valuation, patent valuation, impairment valuation, carried interest valuation, portfolio valuations, IRC 382 valuations, and many other types of stock valuations and business valuations.


With over 50 years of combined valuation experience, we provide top-tier expertise and client service at a reasonable price. Our experience as CFOs and Controllers of venture firms and startups separates us from our competitors who lack the boots-on-the-ground experience that our clients have, which we also share.

Contact Us

If you plan to issue stock options in the next twelve months or have any questions about potential valuations, give us a call for a free consultation and we will give you candid advice about whether a valuation may be needed and how we might help. Our goal is to help our clients achieve their desired goals with minimal burden.

Salt Lake City Utah business valuation services

409A Valuation Salt Lake City

Redwood Valuation Partners was formed behind an idea of service positioning us as one of the most well respected companies in the industry. Our expert knowledge of finance, tax, venture capital and the audit process helps us understand the difficulties of start-ups. We speak your language! Give us a call and learn how we can help. For information on Business Valuations follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook and find us on Google+ too! (206) 660-1295

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