The 2008 business year was interesting to say the least. Buyer activity was fairly strong in the first quarter, but slowed considerably in the 2nd and 3rd quarter, followed by a merely stagnant 4th quarter which every business seems to be experiencing. Although slower than 2007, restaurant buyer activity overall was pretty good as we registered approximately 4,000 buyers which is similar to 2005. Median cash available and average cash available fell $19.1% and 11.5% respectively. We expect 2009 to show a better correction in the market as the first 2 quarters may skew the data. Over the last 5 years we have registered over 27,000 registered buyers with nearly $12 billion of cash available. Restaurant owners looking to sell need to anticipate what is going on and be prepared to have there restaurant on the market longer than usual. There are plenty of buyers out there, and it’s a matter of time and patience for transactions to be done.
Below find charts summarizing the buyer activity for the year: