Family Business Coaches Others on Survival

Family Business Coaches Others on Survival

by Elena Cherney
Staff Reporter of The Wall Street Journal

This article is reprinted by permission from

Few people know better than Philippe de Gaspe Beaubien the perils of trying to pass a family business down through the generations.

For 11 generations, his ancestors traded fur, brewed beer, baked biscuits and traded stocks in Quebec. But none of their businesses stayed in the family for more than two generations.

Mr. de Gaspe Beaubien, 72 years old, and his wife, Nan-b, 65, vowed decades ago to have better luck in building their Montreal publishing and broadcasting company, Telemedia Inc., into a multigenerational enterprise. So they sought what little expert advice was then available on running a family business. They interviewed families around the world about their own experiences. And two years ago, they passed control of Telemedia to their three children. Their two sons now run the company. More…