Doug Roberts had experience as a writer, photographer and editor when he decided to start a regional travel and tourism website in 1996. “At the time, a website seemed like publishing your own newspaper, which I thought I could do,” he recalls. But he also admits he had limited technical experience when he started PortsmouthNH.com.
He ran the website for 20 years, through changing technology, evolving online revenue sources, and a booming travel-publishing industry. “My skills were more as a creative person than as a business person,” he says. So when he decided to sell his website, Roberts called upon SCORE for advice.
Roberts met with volunteer mentors Mike Conley and George Collins 10-12 times over the course of eight months. Roberts helped Conley and Collins understand his business model before they assisted in developing a prospectus for sale.
The strength of his prospectus attracted several potential buyers. “Then, during negotiations, [my mentors] let me know what to expect and gave feedback and support as talks proceeded, up to the point where legal advice was needed,” Roberts says. He credits a competitive market and the extensive prepartion with SCORE advisors as the reasons for achieving a satsifactory sale.