Learning To Let Go of the Family Business

“At some point you have to stop

chasing your legacy”

On the way into work today I was listening to sports radio and they were debating whether David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox was going to proceed with his planned retirement at the end of this season, or change his mind and retire later. He is having a great start to his final season and this has some speculating whether he might play longer. Sports athletes are notorious for staying on too long and chasing their legacies. How many times have you seen an athlete hurt their legacy by playing too long and being remembered for their sub-par play at the end of their career, rather than getting out at the top. Think: Brett Favre. It had me thinking this is a similar dilemma family business owners are faced with when they reach their senior years.

There is no retirement age in a family business.

The senior generation can stay on as long as they want. Often beyond their shelf-life. There are many reasons for wanting to stay on longer than they should; succession concerns, fear of retirement, personal finances, to name just a few. More…

When Takeover Targets Become Takeover Artists

Equity Values are Falling. Instead of Panicking, Why not Buy Out a Competitor?

by François M. de Visscher

When it comes to mergers and acquisitions, family businesses usually think of themselves as potential targets, not acquirers. But now may be the perfect time to start thinking more like a potential buyer.

Several economic factors are converging to create a buyer’s market in the acquisitions arena:

  1. Valuations of private companies have dropped along with public valuations. When family companies see their own valuations diminishing, they often assume a defeatist attitude. It’s harder to create liquidity for shareholders. But the value of your competitors has likely fallen as well. That’s good if you’re a potential buyer. Instead of retrenching into a defensive posture, consider going on the offensive, by expanding or developing new lines and getting into new markets. Think of an acquisition as a different way to create value for future generations of shareholders.  More…