Flight attendant to successful businesswoman, Belinda Packer discusses her transition and why she encourages more women to become business brokers.
Packer’s outgoing and charismatic nature has led to an extensive business career. 20 years as a business owner, operating multiple businesses and franchises to becoming a qualified financial planner and business broker. Belinda has learned what's important in business and how to be successful.
"Many moons ago I was a QANTAS flight attendant. I took a redundancy package and with that, I bought a juice bar, just when Boost [Juice] was a big craze when it first launched. Then I basically built that business up and sold it within a year. I thought ‘well this is pretty good’ because I can build these businesses up, sell them, and have no capital gains tax. The profit is tax-free as long as I rolled it into another business within 24 months.”
From there, Belinda started to buy run-down businesses with the intention of building them up and selling them. These businesses ranged from construction services to the trucking and transport industry.
“I did that and thought ‘wow this is really interesting’... I love figures and financials and decided to go get my financial planning degree.”
Having an interest in fields that are typically male-dominated, allowed Packer to push the boundaries.
"The business brokering world is very male-dominated, especially the sectors that I am in… manufacturing and construction services.”
Packer supports women in multiple industries and believes more women should become business brokers. Highlighting the number of successful women who own businesses and brokers can assist.
“At the moment, I've got this lady out west with this very successful tyre and mechanical business and is dominating the market. So even though the public perceive this type of business as male-based businesses, there are a lot of women involved in those businesses as well and I love seeing this" Packer said
Business broking isn't all about sales, it's about making those connections
"Building relationships is the most important thing, I wouldn't be in the mergers and acquisition space if I didn't have those relationships."
"I've just listed a successful eCommerce business that the vendor started from scratch, a multimillion-dollar business. Four brokers were interviewed to be the agent, but I was successful.”
“I said to her ‘why did you choose me?’ and she said, ‘because I didn't warm to them, they didn't communicate’.”
“I think it's all about customer relations and building that rapport with people and if you don't have that skill, you're not going to get that business and I think that comes from the QANTAS days." Belinda reflected.
Customer relations aside, Belinda talks about her problem-solving skills and the importance of having a good handle on your financials.
“For me as a financial planner, it doesn't matter what business you're in, as long as you've got the revenue and profit that stacks up for a buyer. Business is business."
“By conducting the correct financial analysis when I list a business, I can quickly identify any issues that may arise. For example, If I go into a business and see that they have too many staff and it is biting into their profits… From a financial perspective, I can quickly identify the problem before we list the business for sale."
“In some cases, I might have a business sale where I structure it where the staff member buys the business, so I'm very creative and will always find a solution.”
Joining the Morgan Business Sales team last year, Belinda is loving being a part of the family, and she really appreciates working with a business that has such good software (CRM) that really takes the administration workload off for Belinda.
“I work for myself and aligned myself with Morgan Business Sales because their support is amazing. They’re just a joy to be around. ” Belinda gushed, jokingly.
“It was the best decision to align myself with Morgan Business Brokers.”
“They’re very family-oriented, I'm a single mum with two teenagers. We've all got kids and family is priority number 1 and business 2.”
Belinda’s path as a businesswoman and single mum has led to her success.
“My biggest success is where I am now with my work and my kids. I always see the glass half full. I'm a very positive person and I think my past experiences have gotten me here today. All those experiences, sometimes it's been a bit of a rollercoaster and that's just a part of the journey”
"As a single mother you learn to appreciate it a lot more and you do the hard yards. It's taken me a while to get to where I am and when you get there, you're like ‘okay I gotta have a bit of gratitude here’ and just sit back and think this is where I am and be humble.”
“My biggest success is I'm content with where I am today.”
When asked what advice Belinda would give somebody, whether they be a prospective buyer, somebody wanting to enter the world of business brokering, or just general advice, she said:
“My advice to my kids when they get older is ‘just do something you enjoy’ because a lot of people make that mistake, they go into an industry they think they have to, and they really don’t.”
Caitlin has a background in media and communications, studying journalism at University and doing various freelance writing and production work over the past 5 years.
Having grown up in a family business, Caitlin understands and values the importance of small business. Particularly creating and encouraging opportunity for people from all backgrounds and experiences to follow their dreams, and not only be welcomed into the world of business, but succeed.