How to present and sell a business/product (one in the same) to potential buyer (bigger company) without risking them stealing my idea?


I have developed my product completely, and have built a business for the product to be able to take to market. The product is unlike anything else on the market as of now and in my opinion would work well with a number of product lines for a lot of bigger companies.

I would like to sell my developed product to a bigger company, and I have contact with the right people that can make decisions.


  1. How do I pitch an idea, let them try the product, etc. without them taking and copying my product a week later and calling it their own?
  2. If there are any contracts that are needed to be signed, what exactly are those?
  3. Is there anything I should not do or should do to protect my finished product? (this type of product cannot be patented)


Ideas Contract Pitch Data Protection

asked Apr 23 '11 at 06:07
16 points
  • As per the answers we have... why would you like to sell a product that's good and with a prosperous market? Can't you make it work by yourself? – Tiago Cardoso 13 years ago

5 Answers


But if you are not already in the market how do you know you built a business for it?Maybe you think it is a great product but you need to prove that same way your customers think.So regarding mentioned points.

1 - I think showing up a product will not put you in the risk if it is already complete,remember always that big guys are like elephants they are big and they move slowly so for them building your product will cost 10 times more money and time.If you really think it is a great product and you see that customers like it then I am sure you do everything much faster.Also your advantage is that your product is already built i do not think that by reviewing product they will do well in implementation process.

2 - You can sign an NDA but if they decide to steal something to steal from you I am sure they will do NDA can just partially defend you,but I think you should ask them to sign an NDA they will think that you are more professional.

3 - Ship that release it and see if it is really what do you think about it.If it is I am sure in very fast period you can gain recognition.

answered Aug 9 '11 at 01:10
It Samurai
11 points


I'm going to agree with the general consensus here and say that you must develop the business yourself.

HOWEVER, if you have these great contacts, then you likely have contact with somebody who can partner with you and may even take a risk on leaving his/her position to work on a start-up. Check out this option, especially if you have a contact that can bring some customer loyalty and their own network with them.

NDA is the way I would go if you continue to approach another company with your idea. As a general rule though, most people won't pay for something they don't have to. Pretty sad. If it's cheaper to subvert the NDA with some legal ease and develop the product on their own, they will.

Some wise words from Derek Sivers "Ideas, on their own, are just a multiplier. They're worth nothing without the execution."

Check out the video here

answered Sep 13 '11 at 04:29
Ryan Chatterton
921 points


The one thing about NDA's is that typically when pitching to a VC, they actually almost always never sign those on the first meeting because at the initial stages because they might hear 10 people with the same concept, but the trade secrets are in how you execute that objective.

Your best bet when it comes to pitching is to be very careful about who you work with and keep the details of your concept under wraps so if there is interest, in the second meeting you can have an NDA for the details of your venture rather than just the idea.

answered Sep 13 '11 at 05:07
397 points


You will need customers and sales. Your question makes it sound like you have not put it on the market yet. Everyone will ask you how many customers you have. If you have no customers they will think your product doesn't work or has problems. Or they will string you along for months/years until you run out of cash and then try to buy you for a really low price.

If you have customers then you will have a pitch story to tell them. You can tell them why people buy it and use it, what people say about it etc

answered May 3 '11 at 23:16
1,231 points
  • James... What if the main reason you approached the bigger company for a buy out, is so that the company can take full credit, and say it was theirs. Also there has to be value, in having the availability to tweat it to make it their own product that suits them, instead of introducing it into the market, and then change it after so many people are using the product. I see your point though and it is very valid. But I guess its all about the approach...also the company may think what your selling is cheaper since it has no actual users associated with it yet...therefore turning it into a sell. – User9915 13 years ago


This question is really close to this one. See if those answers helps.

answered May 1 '11 at 06:27
1,567 points

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