A turnkey business is a business that includes everything you need to immediately start running the business.
InvestorWords.com defines a turnkey operation as "A product or service which can be implemented or utilized with no additional work required by the buyer (just by 'turning the key')".
A business that is being sold as a turnkey business would include tangibles such as inventory and equipment through intangibles such as a previously established reputation and goodwill.
The most common type of business sold as a turnkey business is a franchise. In the case of franchises, a turnkey business often includes a building that has been constructed to the franchise's specifications, and an exclusive territory.
Entrepreneurs considering buying a turnkey businessshould always do their due diligence and be sure they know exactly what a particular turnkey operation includes; not all turnkey businesses are created equal!