The MSP Event of the Year! Aug 27 - 30

Should I Sell My MSP Now or Later?

Should I Sell My MSP Now or Later?

Making Sense of Market Trends

Let’s say you’re thinking about selling your MSP. You’ve put quite a few years into it, along with some blood, sweat, and tears, and now you’re thinking about getting out – ideally, with a nice paycheck in hand for all your efforts.

But should you sell your MSP now? Or, should you wait it out? Bide your time. Grow a little more…

This is a terrific question, and it couldn’t be timelier. M&A activity is once again on the rise. Actually, it has risen – and quite dramatically! MSP owners are approaching the table in droves in search of lucrative deals, driven by a large pool of interested buyers.

You’re of course tempted to get in on the action. But you’re not sure if it’s the right time. It’s such a big decision. You just don’t know –

Relax. Take a breath. And keep reading. You deserve some clarity, and while we can’t make the all-important decision for you, we can give you the information you need to make the right choice for your business and your clients.

In this first article in a two-part series, we’re examining the question of ‘now or later’ through the lens of market conditions. In part two, we will zoom in on what makes an MSP ‘sellable.’ Let’s dive right in!

Seize the Moment

Should you sell your MSP now? Assuming your MSP is ‘sellable,’ is now a good time to enter the M&A arena in search of a deal?

The short answer is unequivocal: All things being equal, now is a GREAT time to sell your MSP. The main reason comes down to basic economics and a little thing called demand…

After cooling off briefly in 2023, we are in the middle of another M&A hot streak projected to match if not surpass the buying frenzy a few years ago, which saw nearly 2000 deals closed! Right now, the market is flush with PE firms and large ‘platform MSPs‘ who are all salivating at the prospect of purchasing quality MSP businesses. MSPs make attractive acquisition targets for a number of reasons, which we go over in our free MSP acquisitions guide (get your copy).

Bottom line – Selling your MSP right now means taking advantage of near-perfect market conditions. Simply put, it can make you a pretty penny.

But what about…

You may still have some reservations. This is only natural. After all, you’re thinking about selling your MSP business, not lemonade on a street corner. Market conditions might be ideal, but what about…

What about, well, waiting? If M&A heated up in 2021 and 2022, cooled off in 2023, and once again heated up in 2024, can’t you just wait a little longer – till the next surge in M&A activity?

In theory, yes. But in practice, things aren’t so simple. For one, markets are inherently unpredictable. How many years will it be until you see an opportunity like this again? Do you have the energy to continue running your MSP for three more years? Five? Ten?

More importantly, M&A activity is so rampant, it’s literally changing the competitive landscape. As more and more MSPs get rolled up, we’re seeing larger and larger MSPs emerge – platform MSPs with never-before-seen resources and capabilities. And as these ‘super MSPs’ get bigger, so too will the MSPs they target for acquisition (in fact, this has already begun to happen). This means you will likely need to continue growing steadily to remain an attractive acquisition target further down the line.

You might be thinking, So what. I can keep growing. No problem…

While we admire your confidence, it’s important to know what you’re up against. Remember those super MSPs we mentioned a second ago? They’re your competition from here on out. That means if you want to sustain your current growth rate, you’re going to have to work twice as hard just to keep pace with these multi-state and even national enterprises.

This article does a terrific job of summarizing the challenges MSPs will face over the next ten years. Doing things on your own might have worked until this point, but times change, and making your exit now could be a timely way to avoid a very tough road ahead.

There are also your clients to think of. Is grinding things out on your own really what’s best for them? Getting acquired by a larger enterprise can mean getting access to crucial resources, better tools, more talent – all good things that can help your clients find success.

Does this mean you should sell to the first buyer that comes a-knockin’?

Absolutely not! Thoroughly vetting potential buyers is vital to securing the right deal for your MSP business. At the very least, a potential buyer should…

  • Demonstrate a track record of successful MSP acquisitions
  • Share your company’s values and vision
  • Offer a fair valuation and proof of financial backing
  • Commit to supporting your employees and maintaining operational continuity

Check out our free guide to MSP acquisitions for a more detailed discussion of evaluating potential buyers.

The Heart of the Matter

Let’s talk feelings. Maybe you’ve determined that your MSP is worth selling. Maybe you’ve got a few interested buyers. Maybe you’ve even received an offer. But nevertheless, you’re not sure you’re ready. You don’t feel all that ready…

Look, we get it. Selling the company you built from the ground up is an emotional experience – and one of the biggest decisions of your life. You’re going to feel things. A lot of things.

But the truth is, you’re likely never going to feel completely, one-hundred-percent ready to sell, the same way most parents don’t ever feel totally ready to send their kids off to college. But when the time’s right, the time’s right.

This isn’t to say you should ignore your feelings. If you feel profound doubts about a particular potential buyer, for instance, listen to your gut! You don’t want to sell your MSP to the wrong buyer, because it could leave you with a raw deal and your clients up a creek.

But general nervousness about the prospect of selling your MSP is completely natural and to be expected. You’re only human! So let yourself feel – just don’t let your feelings stop you from seizing a golden opportunity.

A Unique Opportunity to Talk Strategy

It’s no secret that we’re involved in M&A here at The 20. In fact, at the time of this writing, we’ve completed over 30 MSP acquisitions – and we’re looking for more quality MSPs to join our growing team!

The secret to our M&A success is no secret – our approach makes things easy and brings unique benefits to MSP owners and their teams.

Want to learn more? Book a 1-hour meeting with Tim Conkle, CEO of The 20 and the visionary behind our unique consolidation strategy. Tim can walk you through what makes The 20 unique among M&A players, as well as provide you with feedback on your current exit strategy.


Stay tuned for the second installment in this two-part series, where we’re tackling the question of what makes an MSP ‘sellable.’ Till then, browse our freshly launched MSP acquisitions page for free resources and no-nonsense guidance.