STRATEGIC OWNERSHIP DESIGN & TRANSFER

Family Ownership is one of the leading factors explaining the stronger performance and greater innovation in family businesses. A growing body of research reveals an undeniable understanding of how crucial family ownership is to the high performance of family companies, due to their stable, long-term, committed, family ownership groups.

Ownership planning is essential in family enterprises, but is often overlooked or done with a narrow perspective. The desire to minimize inheritance taxes is often the main dimension considered by family business owners. We believe this is insufficient and leaves family businesses vulnerable to ineffective ownership structures, voting shares in the hands of unprepared shareholders, lack of alignment among family owners, unsatisfied liquidity needs or insufficient reinvestment in the business. These and several other problems can reduce shareholder value and have harmful effects on the continuity of the family enterprise.

We believe that the manner in which ownership of the family business is designed, structured and passed can either support or derail the family enterprise. Deliberately planned ownership strategies build shareholder value for the long-term, and strengthen the business’ ownership foundation, making way for the competitive advantages that a strong family ownership team bears.

CFEG challenges the convention that most families take toward ownership by assisting families with comprehensive ownership planning. We assist family owners to be forward-thinking in their ownership design and to take an expanded approach to the process. We work collaboratively with family ownership groups to design effective ownership strategies; put in place the right ownership structure and governance; develop capable owners or beneficiaries who will have a controlling voice in the system; plan ahead for transitioning ownership; plan for the impact of an ownership transfer on the governance and leadership of the business; strengthen shareholder agreements; create and strengthen owner governance; increase alignment among owners; address owner conflicts and tensions; determine dividend amounts and create dividend policies; and plan for and satisfy family liquidity needs and reinvestment to fund the business’ growth plans. 

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