It’s one of those cruel twists of fate for a small business owner: You overcome all sorts of odds to successfully start your company, and then you endure the slings and arrows of the economic times to keep it going. Then, at a time when you should be celebrating your success and enjoying some “golden years,” you face another challenge: Leaving your business without destroying it in the process.

As Inc. Magazine has pointed out, about 60 percent of business owners who try to sell their businesses are unable to do so. To help business owners better navigate the exit process, the New Jersey Entrepreneurial Network (NJEN) will hold a “meet-up” on Wednesday, April 9, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Princeton Marriott at 100 College Road East. The cost is $50, pre-registered and pre-paid by 5 p.m. Friday, April 4, or $60 at the door. For more information visit www.njen.com.

The good news, says the NJEN, is that the number of small business deals that closed in 2013 was significantly higher than 2012, and — according to a CNBC report — selling prices are up. NJEN’s April 9 panel includes several people who have seen the exit strategy work from both the buyer’s and seller’s point of view:

Josh Elser of Susquehanna Growth Equity, a private equity firm that acquires software companies. Elser supports portfolio companies while sourcing, evaluating, and executing new transactions.

Rita M. Romeu, a partner and vice president at Accounts Receivable Management and Data Services (ARMDS), a health care consulting and outsourcing company based in Bloomfield. With revenues of over $18 million, ARMDS was acquired in 2012 by Adreima, a revenue cycle consulting company based in Phoenix.

Joe Allegra of Edison Ventures, who in 1998 sold Princeton Softech to Computer Horizons. He joined Edison Ventures in 2001 and has served on 25 boards, guided management teams on growth and preparation for exits, and has been involved in at least 10 company sales.

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