Passing on the Torch

Will your business still be in the family 400 years from now?

The answer to that is “probably not”. Statistically, only 40% of family owned businesses survive to the second generation, 12% to the third, and 3% to the fourth. One reason for this might be lack of interest by subsequent generations, another might be the evolving market and economy, but one of the main reasons that family businesses don’t survive to the second and third generation is lack of planning.

Passing on the family business may be challenging, but can be accomplished through  planning, as this article about Shirley Plantation in Charles City, VA shows. Shirley Plantation has been in the same family for almost 400 years, and is still going strong. The reason for this success, says Charles H. Carter, the current executive director of the plantation, is that the family has planned for the future each step of the way.

Business succession planning is a key element to owning your business at any step of the game, not just at retirement age. This is because it is not merely about exit strategy, but about setting goals and planning for future success. And leaving the business to your children is not your only option. You may decide to sell your business, or leave it to a partner. The options are out there, if you only know where to find them.

Whether your business is in its first generation or its fifth, whether you intend to pass it down or sell, planning is essential if you want your business to survive. We can assist you. Whether through wills and trusts, or the succession planning described in this blog, it is our business to help you look to the future.