Most successful families are built on their entrepreneurship and thriving family businesses. In fact, family business assets are often comprised of more than 50% of the family wealth. Family businesses that have persevered over generations despite changing conditions strive for operational excellence. They also are skilled at migrating to new value-creating activities for the succeeding generations to take over. They often don’t become stuck in traditional businesses or outmoded practices. At A.D. Family Office, we look beyond the current, and plan ahead when comes to succession and transition to the next generation. Planning against potential family feuds, boardroom tussles and inequality becomes part and parcel of succession planning.


A direct investment typically includes involvement in the company at Board level in order to strive towards a more efficient and coordinated operational business model

We have considerable experience in managing all aspects of the acquisition process, including:

  • Performing initial appraisals on a acquisition target
  • Discussions with operational management and assessment of business forecasts
  • Negotiation with existing shareholders
  • Formulating deal structures, including tax planning
  • Instructing lawyers on term sheets and transaction documents
  • Formulating management incentive plans

We create value for clients through an active involvement in the company. Our services include:

  • Giving financial planning assistance to the investee company
  • Attendance at Board meetings and key operational meetings to represent investor interests
  • Senior management appointments
  • Group reorganisations or reconstructions
  • Refinancing activities
  • Ongoing review of financial performance of investee companies and taking action when necessary
  • Taxation planning, banking and financial accounting support if necessary

The disposal process typically includes:

  • Negotiation of main terms with buyer
  • Liaison with executive management to ensure the disposal process is smooth
  • Taxation considerations
  • Instructing lawyers on transaction documents
  • Negotiating and structuring future ‘upsides’ if appropriate


For Founders

Transitioning leadership for a family business presents interesting challenges, and generates concerns about planning for estates, taxes and wealth preservation as well as providing leadership to sustain the business into the future when the founder is no longer at the helm.

Most people don’t like to talk about death or plan for its eventuality.  But forward-thinking owners know the importance of planning for their own mortality and the consequences of failing to do so.  Many family-owned businesses have been sold, some at bargain prices, to settle an owner’s estate tax/creditor bill.  Others have fallen apart because there was no line of succession for leadership of the company.  These businesses suffered the consequences of inadequate succession planning.

A successful transition is a process that takes years to execute. Before transferring your business, ask some key questions:

Do you feel confident that you have chosen the best person to succeed you? Be honest and objective when evaluating the strengths, weaknesses and capabilities of the person you want to run the business when you step aside.

Are you financially secure? Have you adequately prepared for retirement? What role will the business plan in ensuring your security?

When should I start to work on succession planning? If you own a business, the time to start is now. No one says it will be easy to formulate a plan, but the consequences of not having one can be serious. A lack of succession planning is often coupled with inadequate or nonexistent estate planning. This combination can result in excess estate challenges, family feuds and general chaos upon the retirement or death of a significant owner.

How will I transfer the business? There are a number of options you can choose for transferring your business to an owner-manager, owner-investor or a hybrid ownership. Choosing the option that is right for your company and your family is a critical decision best handled with the assistance of objective advisors.

Options include:

  • Outright transfer
  • Intrafamily sale
  • Installment sale
  • Private annuity sale
  • Irrevocable life insurance trust
  • Redemption, including a buy-sell agreement or cross-purchase sale

Choosing the right option is a complex decision that will vary depending on the needs of the various involved parties. At A.D., we understand the need to customise and are able to advise the best succession structure coherent with the family wealth preservation planning.

For Key Employee(s)

Succession planning is a talent management process that builds a pool of trained workers who are ready to fill key roles when leaders and other key employees step down. Organizations with succession planning programs in place foster a talent-oriented culture by recruiting skilled workers and top talent. Once recruited, businesses focus on developing these workers’ skills, expertise and knowledge so they are prepared to take on leadership roles in the event of organizational growth, talent loss or management turnover. 

However, a change in leadership can be sparked by more than a resignation i.e. an employee might retire, get sick or even death. Succession planning ensures there’s a strategy in place for someone to step in, get promoted and take over that person’s duties without a loss in productivity and morale.

The process of succession planning is unique to each company, but there are general guidelines that you can follow to help your business create a successful succession strategy.

  • Identify the most important roles in the organization that would need to be filled quickly if that employee exits the organization.
  • Define the main responsibilities, competencies and requirements for each job, including what personality traits best suit the role.
  • Use the established criteria to assess candidates and to determine who has the potential to grow into a leadership position.
  • Establish a talent pool of workers who are qualified to eventually fill key roles in the organization.
  • Develop these employees through training and valuable work experience so they are ready to take over leadership positions when the time comes.

However complex, be rest assured that A.D. has the expertise to design a key employee(s) structure that is able to accommodate both the key employee(s) and the organization.

If it is worth striving for, It is worth preserving


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