Business Assets: Leverage all of your assets

Monday, November 21, 2011

A. An intangible asset is something that typically is reflected in the line item of goodwill when evaluating a business. The basic assumption is that an intangible asset could be anything that reflects value in a non-material form. Some examples of intangible assets are under-utilized employee skills, referral source relationships, client databases, operational infrastructure production capacity and community presence to name a few. 

Identifying intangible assets can benefit your company. In today's HME market transition is the key to survival. It is essential that HME companies embrace this transition with a think out-of-the box mentality. The first step in leveraging your current asset values is a full assessment of your organization's tangible and non-tangible assets. 

Conduct an assessment

There is no established procedure for conducting a value assessment of intangible assets; however, what I suggest is to actually look at a financial goal first and then identify components of your business that would help you get to that goal. You would start by identifying a new market or product, and the potential returns, and then look back at your current operation and seek out underutilized platforms to launch into this segment such as your database, your retail walk-in and your community relationships.

The benefit of identifying intangible assets is that the value to be derived from these assets have unlimited value potential, whereas tangible assets have real defined value and cost.

Tangible assets typically can be reflected in book values often calculated by market values and have a fixed ceiling. However, intangible values such as client databases have an unlimited value potential based on a company's ability to leverage intangible assets utilizing new marketing techniques and channeling new products and services to a client database.

Ryan Ruskin is an independent consultant and attorney. Reach him at or 772-528-4818.