Business Succession Planning

We understand that businesses are a key component of wealth management

You have spent countless hours and tremendous energy toward building a successful business. At some point, though it may seem counterintuitive, you will need to be just as focused in defining a business succession plan and determining how to extricate yourself from the company you have worked so hard to grow. 

When planning for succession, an owner must deal with a complex set of business, family, tax and estate issues. Our advisors draw upon our substantial expertise as well as the resources of our affiliated accounting firm and our external strategic partners to negotiate even the most complex and challenging courses of action.  





father and child having a discussion

Why Owners Plan for Succession 

Business owners undertake succession planning for a variety of reasons. You may want to retire in a different location for climate or family considerations, or you have received an offer to buy your business, or you want to pass your business along to your children. Or maybe you will continue working, but you want the business to extend beyond your lifetime – and want to minimize the estate taxes the IRS may impose on your hard-earned gains. 

Reasons for succession planning go beyond protecting a successful business: the death of a partner or co-owner, divorce, pressure from family members or others who may want you to retire, or your own health. Your company might not be performing well, your competition is at an advantage, or you are simply tiring of all the time and energy your business demands on you emotionally or physically.  

Succession Preferences

Entrepreneurs rank their preferences in disposing of their businesses as follows: 

  1. Transition the business to children or other family members. 
  2. Sell the business as a going concern to partners (via a buy/sell agreement), an unaffiliated third party, internally to employees (ESOP), or the public (via a stock offering). 
  3. Exit the business altogether and sell the assets. 

The time to determine an exit strategy is before you need one, even if it is likely to be many years before you will leave your business. Working with an HBKS advisor in advance provides the time to implement a plan that will optimize your chances for maximum financial and personal satisfaction.