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How Long Is Too Long for a CEO?

Bill Marriott Jr. sat down for an interview recently with family business consultant Andrew Keyt and the Wall Street Journal’s Kate Linebaugh. The real impulse for the article was Mr. Marriott’s decision to reach outside the...more

Top Highlights from PwC Family Business Survey

PwC, one of the “Big Four” accounting firms and a consulting titan, released its latest periodic survey of United States family businesses. PwC performs this survey every two years and has been doing it for ten years now. ...more

Innovation in Family Business?

The latest from the Harvard Business Review’s ongoing inquiry into family businesses has yielded a surprising result. Research recently published in the Academy of Management Journal indicates that family businesses actually...more

2/7/2017  /  Family Businesses , Innovation

Family Business Report Highlights Successful Northwest Family Businesses

You may have thought the big story for Friday, January 20, 2017 was the inauguration of our forty-fifth president. But for those of us in the family business community in the Pacific Northwest, the Puget Sound Business...more

1/23/2017  /  Family Businesses

On the Horizon: Will the 2017 Real Estate Market Affect Your Family Business?

Many family offices and established family businesses have a great deal invested in real estate. For some, these are active investments involving development, construction and sale. For others, these are either residential...more

The Next Generation

Almost by definition, a family-owned business consists of multiple generations of owners and operators. The different generations may have different visions for the business, but they are usually all aligned on wanting what...more

Managing the Generational Transition

Almost by definition, a family-owned business consists of multiple generations of owners and operators. The different generations may have different visions for the business, but they are usually all aligned on wanting what...more

2016 NACD Private Company Governance Survey Results

The National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) recently released its 2015-2016 NACD Private Company Governance Survey. In an article in the March 2016 edition of “Private Company Director” – a monthly publication...more

The Results Are In!

Each year, our colleagues at the Pacific Family Business Institute (PFBI) conduct a survey of approximately two hundred family business leaders in the Pacific Northwest. They ask about topics such as growth, succession...more

Family Business in China – Is There A Succession Crisis?

In September, Gary Locke, former U.S. Ambassador to China, Secretary of Commerce and two-term Governor of the State of Washington, returned to Davis Wright Tremaine as a Senior Advisor. Ambassador Locke’s return sparked a...more

Washington LLC Act: How Family Businesses Are Affected

Embracing change is tough, because it rarely hugs you back. But the recent changes to the Washington State LLC Act (RCW Chapter 25.15) at least have some provisions that are affectionate toward family businesses and LLCs in...more

Family Businesses Outperform Publicly Traded Companies

In late 2012, researchers Nicolas Kachaner, George Stalk and Alain Bloch at the Harvard Business School published a study to compare family-owned businesses of certain sizes and industries with their non-family-owned...more

Structure, structure, structure

In reading Andrew Keyt’s piece about family businesses (recently published on FoxNews.com), “structure” was the one word that continued to resonate for me. Mr. Keyt never used the word “structure” but his advice to family...more

Five Legal Documents Every Family Business Should Have (and Use)

Every business is different. Certainly, every family is different. But family businesses, as a group, share certain challenges and opportunities. In order to ensure their businesses survive, thrive and grow, leaders of family...more

The Pressure of Stepping into the Family Business

First and second generation family business owners spend an inordinate amount of time focused on building and preserving their family legacy. This is hard, hard work. For starters, it means not only growing the business and...more

8/11/2015  /  Family Businesses

Financial Statements for the Family Business: What is “Assurance” and How Much Do You Need?

Your family-owned business is growing and growing. In fact, you’re concerned it is outpacing the quality and rigor of your financial and accounting bookkeeping. At an industry event, a colleague asks if you have audited...more

4/20/2015

Deferred Payments and Earnouts – A Potential Source of Family Discord

Let’s assume you are selling the family business. In order to get the best terms and price, you may not be able to negotiate the full purchase price in cash up front. More likely, some portion of the purchase price will be...more

Does “Hobby Lobby” Apply to My Family Business?

On Monday, June 30, 2014, the United States Supreme Court ruled that “closely-held” for-profit companies could be exempt from the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) requirement to offer birth control coverage to their employees. As...more

Family-Owned Business IPO?

A family business does not go public. Going public and sharing ownership with the rest of the world is the opposite of what a family business is striving to do. But the Modesto Bee reported earlier this week that...more

What is Family Business Law?

Family business law is not a substantive specialty like mergers and acquisitions, securities laws, trusts and estates or federal tax. In fact, a good family business lawyer will probably identify first and foremost as a...more

3/7/2014

Keeping Ownership in the Family

As a family enterprise, your business runs best if it is owned and managed by the family. So it is in everyone’s interest to make sure no family member can transfer ownership outside of the family. To do this (and do it...more

Leading the Family

Selling or transitioning a family business can be a daunting task – especially for those individuals trying to lead the process on behalf of their family. The challenges can result from the multiple owners and stake-holders...more

2/11/2014  /  Family Businesses
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