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March 1, 2005

The myth that the eldest son automatically inherits the bulk of a wealthy estate or family business could be exploded once and for all, if the findings of a new study on Britain’s rich are to be believed.

Scott McCulloch is editor of Families in Business

January 1, 2005

Supporters of family business come in various guises. So who would have thought a vociferous critic in Dubai would qualify?

Scott McCulloch is editor of Families in Business

January 1, 2005

Scott McCulloch
Editor in Chief

November 1, 2004

Australia’s federal government has called for submissions from family businesses so it can better meet the needs of the country’s largest business sector.

Australia's federal government has called for submissions from family businesses so it can better meet the needs of the country's largest business sector. This is welcome news. Australia's small business minister Joe Hockey made the pledge after a debate with opposition finance and small business spokesman Bob McMullan at a national conference held earlier this year. Mr Hockey says family businesses are the engine of the Australian economy and are major contributors to the country's GDP. He is right.

September 1, 2004

There’s no shortage of findings that suggest family businesses have their work cut out in terms of succession planning.

There's no shortage of findings that suggest family businesses have their work cut out in terms of succession planning. In the US, 40% of family owned businesses are expecting a leadership change in the next four years. Billions of dollars will change hands. In Europe, it's a similar tale. But the plot has a new twist: fewer companies are being passed down the generations. As more owners exit, succession planning has lost its urgency. But private investors can be forgiven for feeling a little wobbly.

July 1, 2004

It always boils down to money – disputes that is. You have to feel sorry for family businesses, doubly so for the ones gone public.

It always boils down to money – disputes that is. You have to feel sorry for family businesses, doubly so for the ones gone public. The scrutiny they bear from shareholders, the press and even their own family members can be merciless. But bickering, as any tabloid hack will tell you, makes for gripping copy. The good bit? There is something to be learned.

May 1, 2004

Women are gaining a stronger foothold in the senior ranks of businesses. They tend to work more efficiently than men and offer creative solutions to problems. That’s what the studies tell us. So why not push harder for this business solution?

Women are gaining a stronger foothold in the senior ranks of businesses. They tend to work more efficiently than men and offer creative solutions to problems. That's what the studies tell us. So why not push harder for this business solution?
 

March 1, 2004

Most family firms have a formal succession plan in place, right? Wrong.

Most family firms have a formal succession plan in place, right? Wrong. Ireland and its business families, it seems, is the latest example to be held up in a growing list of apparently shoddy planners. Almost half of Irish family businesses have no formal succession plan in place, according to a survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers. The report, released in March, involved 55 family businesses ranging in size from those with fewer than 25 employees and an income of less than €2 million to those with more than 100 employees and an annual income of more than €20 million.

January 1, 2004

I’ve been planning my retirement for some 15 years. I keep a sharp eye on my pension schemes and investments, and quietly rejoice that I never sunk my hard-earned cash into IT companies – firms that rode a tsunami of venture capital in the late 1990s only to come crashing down as the dot-com boom soured.

I've been planning my retirement for some 15 years. I keep a sharp eye on my pension schemes and investments, and quietly rejoice that I never sunk my hard-earned cash into IT companies – firms that rode a tsunami of venture capital in the late 1990s only to come crashing down as the dot-com boom soured. I've stuck to diamond mines, mutual funds and property, after all, there's nothing wrong with hedging your bets.

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