Business transition and succession planning

Generational transition or sale of the family business, along with leadership succession, is among the most important business decisions you will ever make.

Insight

Reckoning with succession

Succession planning: Having the tough conversation

For a family business, transition is typically a once-in-a-lifetime decision. Whether selling the business, keeping the business in the family or transitioning leadership to heirs or a non-family stakeholder, the issues are immense. And as if the business, emotional, legal, and technical issues weren’t challenging enough, consider this fact: less than half of family businesses survive into a second generation.

Passing the baton is clearly top of mind for family business owners as we learned in PwC’s survey on the next generation of family business leaders: Bridging the gap - Handing over the family business to the next generation".

What are family business owners saying about transition?

  • What are family business owners saying about transition?
  • 33% of family businesses believe ownership will change in the next 5 years
  • 33% of family businesses believe ownership will change in the next 5 years

It starts with a plan
Tackling the issues of business transition and succession may be difficult but the health and longevity of a family business depends on approaching the issues head on, developing a well-thought out plan and communicating the results of that plan to the right stakeholders at the right time. Doing so will increase the likelihood that your business will endure well beyond the transition delivering lasting value to your family.

Turning change into success
We have an experienced team, deployed across our global network of firms, which is dedicated to helping family business owners as they develop and execute each step in their business transition and succession plan, so that the whole process runs as smoothly and efficiently as possible.

  • Key Considerations: What are your most important goals—both commercial and personal—in thinking about your business transition? What are your business’s key value drivers? We will help you think through these questions and others as well as the challenges you may fact along the way.
  • Succession strategy: We then use these findings to recommend a clear succession plan—including timing, future ownership and management shares, and issues of capital.
  • Sale of the business: If a sale is the best option, we will recommend pricing; support you in your efforts to identify the right buyer while respecting your confidentiality.
  • Tax-efficient structuring Regardless of the transition vehicle you chose, we will assess your tax situation and suggest a commercially optimal, tax-efficient solution to transfer the ownership of your business when the time is right.

With business transition and succession your leverage tends to diminish with time. The decisions you make will affect the future of your business, customers, employees—and, most importantly, yourself and your family. Therefore it is often wise to solidify your plan sooner, rather than later.

For more information on business transitions: