The enterprise value specialists at Ceibass have been examining the current situation – an almost $2 trillion dollar relief plan, a possible “infrastructure” boost on the way, low interest rates (for now) and an end in sight for the pandemic — and have concluded that lawn & landscape companies had better prepare for an expansion.
“Economists are predicting healthy GDP growth, inflation is a real possibility and there is real pent-up demand. Top companies in our industry need to be preparing for a surge,” said Tom Fochtman, Ceibasss CEO. “Is it a temporary expansion, say 1-2 years, or does it have legs to last longer? Either way planning is essential to grab a bigger market share.”
What should you be planning to do? The team at Ceibass offered these suggestions:
Get close to your customers and extend your contracts.
- Raise your prices at least 3% (no one will notice). It will fall to profit.
- Review your line of credit and make sure you have capital to expand. Shop around if you have to. Be sure to have excellent “borrowing ability.” There has never been a better time to leverage with debt due to the historic low interest rate environment we are in.
- Shop everything! Lending, insurance, equipment, vendors, etc. Remain loyal where you can but still shop. Don’t be complacent with purchasing and with your lenders.
- Make sure your H-2Bs are in order and ready to go. And whatever your other labor sources are.
- Gear up and get your equipment in order.
- Supply chains are tight and could be disrupted. Make sure you have options. Get with key suppliers and understand delivery schedules and lead times. Anticipate price increases.
- Anticipate staffing levels. Don’t burnout key employees. Enhance recruiting efforts.
- Should you be buying a competitor? Expand geographically?
- Anticipate competitors reaching out to your best customers. Have a strong retention strategy.
- Don’t take on business that you cannot service to your standard of excellence. New service lines can be great but stay within your sweet spot.