A large, well-established family business with many shareholders faced a difficult decision: to sell or not to sell. Over several generations, this manufacturing business had grown substantially, both in terms of value and family shareholders. The company began in a moderately sized town in the Midwest, where it still maintained its main factory. As time passed, one family system gradually became many, with three distinct family branches of ownership eventually resulting in over 80 shareholders.

Ownership percentages and family involvement in the business varied among all branches of the family. Additionally, the shareholder group was not united on their vision for the company, with some having a greater emotional stake in the business than many of their investment-minded kin.

Steve McClure, a consultant with The Family Business Consulting Group (FBCG), had been working with this family on governance, developing both a family council and a formal board. However, family conflict and division among the company’s leaders exhausted the patience of family shareholders, who would no longer wait for effective governance to resolve leadership challenges.

Learn more about how FBCG’s collaboration with Jefferies Financial helped this family become educated, aligned, and comfortable with the prospect of selling their family business. Download»

“FBCG was critical in helping the family hear one another, feel involved, and know that they were personally making the decision about the outcome of the process. Jefferies was critical in teaching us what process to follow, how to understand and present our great business to potential partners, and how to work together step-by-step.”

Family Board Chair