Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Final Step to Reviewing a Business Valuation Report – Consult a CBV

You have now completed your review of a business valuation report by considering:
  1. The type of valuation report;
  2. The author’s credentials and qualifications;
  3. Any scope limitations underlying the conclusions;
  4. The valuation approach(es) adopted;
  5. The reasonableness of the projected cash flows or historical normalization items;
  6. The reasonableness of the discount rate, capitalization rate or valuation multiplier;
  7. Any redundant assets owned by the business;
  8. The income tax implications; and
  9. The overall reasonableness of the value conclusion.
The final step involves consulting an independent Chartered Business Valuator (CBV).  In the context of a legal dispute (e.g. commercial, shareholder or matrimonial dispute) this step is critical.  A survey discussed in CA Magazine showed that 91% of litigators that had retained experts retained them to review opposing expert reports (including business valuation reports). [1]

When served with a business valuation report, litigators (and their clients) will benefit from the above noted process for reviewing that report.  This will enable effective communication with the valuator in order to manage costs for the client.  Consulting a CBV also provides the following benefits:
  1. Receive an independent and objective viewpoint;
  2. Specialized knowledge and experience in business valuation;
  3. Verbal communication of issues and concerns with the opposing expert’s valuation report;
  4. Ascertain the defendant’s potential financial exposure;
  5. Assistance with examinations for discovery of the plaintiff;
  6. Assistance with cross examination of the opposing expert;
  7. The provision of independent expert testimony (e.g. at mediation, arbitration or court) if needed;
  8. Preparation of a Limited Critique Report for use at trial, mediation, arbitration or settlement discussions; and
  9. Preparation of an independent Valuation Report for use at trial, mediation, arbitration or settlement discussions.
According to the Canadian Institute of Chartered Business Valuators (CICBV), a Limited Critique Report is defined as "any written communication containing comments on a report containing a conclusion as to the value of shares, assets or an interest in a business, or any conclusion of a financial nature in the context of litigation or a dispute, that does not itself contain a valuation conclusion or any conclusion of a financial nature." [2]

A Limited Critique Report can be very helpful for identifying issues or concerns with the plaintiff’s business valuation, which can help facilitate settlement discussions.  However, if an independent business valuation is required, the CBV will have to provide a Valuation Report, which as discussed under an earlier post, can take the form of a Calculation, Estimate or Comprehensive Valuation Report.

If you are acting for the defendant in a legal dispute involving a business valuation and have just been provided with the plaintiff’s expert business valuation report, contact us at www.vspltd.ca.  We can help by providing some preliminary comments, a Limited Critique Report, a Valuation Report or any of the other benefits outlined above. 

2.  CICBV Professional Standards No. 410, 420 and 430 - Limited Critique Reports.


  1. Good summary - practical advice. Always appreciated.

    Johan Gijsbers
    Attorney - Cape Town, South Africa

  2. It is very important to valuation of the business how to growth their own business