You’ve worked hard building your business, growing your team, and achieving success. When the time comes to exit your business, it’s important to plan your succession strategy on your own terms.
Whether you are looking to retire, sell, or transition your company to new leadership, a succession plan will provide a strategic map of what should be executed, how, and by who.
Call 905-632-5978 to set up a complimentary call to discuss your succession plan.
What is succession planning?
Succession planning is a strategy for passing on leadership or in most cases ownership roles of a business.
A succession plan will help smooth transitions and keep the focus on the business.
Succession planning is a good way to:
- Safeguard assets
- Ensure financial security
- Guide ownership transfers
- Optimize and integrate tax planning
- Manage risk
- Highlight the value drivers of your business
Our advisory experts will help you successfully plan and smoothly transition your business ownership.
Who needs a succession plan?
Every business needs a succession plan. Succession planning may be less complex for smaller or family-owned businesses than for larger, more complex companies, but it is essential for all businesses regardless of size to ensure a seamless transition and minimal disruption.
We work with:
- Private businesses who want to plan for their family to take over their business
- CEOs of companies who are looking to retire
- Entrepreneurs who are looking to sell their business
- Business owners planning ahead for any unforeseen events or unexpected opportunities
No matter the circumstance or size of your business, we can help you build the right exit strategy. We’re here to help sort through the issues and lay the foundation for a sound and minimize the stress of transitioning ownership of your business.
Succession Planning For Privately Owned Businesses
Planning for the future starts with the present. Without a family to inherit the business, business owners must consider who will be a good fit to acquire the business, or if the business is in a position to be sold.
Strategic succession planning allows you to create a broad-based plan that addresses the needs and goals of both your business and your future. With proper and early planning, you can maintain control of the transition process and develop the competency of your successor.
Many business owners also use the sale of the business as a means of retirement. By working with a trusted advisor, you can understand the value of your business and realistically plan for your future.
Our succession planning team can ensure you are making the right decisions now to protect your assets and secure your financial future. Contact us to discuss your company’s succession plan.
Succession Planning For Family-Owned Businesses
The succession of a family-owned business can be personal and emotional. Family interests and business goals do not always align, so meeting the needs of your family while ensuring the growth and stability of your business requires careful planning.
Succession planning takes more than a few months — it can take years. By starting the conversation now, you can prepare and plan for owner and management transitions that could potentially disrupt the value of your business and your family’s lives.
Our experienced accountants can help you plan for the future of your family’s business, so you can pass on your legacy. Protect your finances and make sure the future of your business is secure for the next generation — contact us today.
Ready to Get Started?
Don’t leave money on the table — if you’re thinking about retiring or selling your business, we’re here to help. Contact us today to set up a complimentary call to discuss your succession plan.
Our Business Succession Planning Process
Succession planning is a complex and multidisciplinary process. We work closely with you to develop a clear strategy and action plan that recognizes your unique circumstances.
1. Outlining objectives and goals
From a client’s perspective, succession planning is the final stage of their continuity in the business. The question is, “Will there be a next stage?” Most business owners want to see a continuation of the business, but how will that look? Some typical scenarios include:
- Selling to a competitor
- Transitioning to next-gen family member(s)
- Transitioning to the management group
It is essential to consider the available options to determine the best next stage for the business and family unit. Our strategic advisors are here to help.
2. Identifying value drivers
Value drivers are key variables and activities that have a significant impact on your business and affect the valuation of the company. Identifying value drivers is crucial to understanding how to maximize the value of your company.
When contemplating a transition, you want to maximize the value of your business. That is where the concept of value drivers becomes critical. When looking at succession planning, our strategic advisors help you determine the value of the company.
3. Creating new processes
When developing a succession plan for your business, it is crucial that the company has a proper management structure and set of processes to ensure it operates independently of its owner/founder.
Personal goodwill applies when the company depends on the owner, or customers view the business as the owner instead of a separate entity. This is not a positive item from a succession model point of view because it means the company is dependent on the owner. As a result, when the owner leaves, the company cannot operate similarly.
It is critical to identify these facts early in succession planning and work to mitigate the effects and develop a self-sustaining business that can be easily passed on to the next owner.
Don’t leave the future of your business up to chance. Contact us to talk about creating a succession plan for your company.
A succession plan outlines the people or team(s) responsible for executing the plan, any influencing factors, and goals for the business.
For example, transferring the business to the next generation can usually involve a significant amount of tax planning. A succession plan to transfer ownership to the next generation might include freezing the value of the current business to defer the tax. On the other hand, if you plan to sell the business to management, financing and a good tax planning structure are essential. Alternatively, if you want to sell to an unknown party, it could take one to two years once the business is ready for sale, making a succession plan an important step.
Let us help you find out how much your business is worth.
The Treasury Board of Canada outlines five steps in creating a succession plan:
- Identify key areas and positions
- Identify capabilities of key areas and positions
- Identify interested employees and assess them against their capabilities
- Develop and implement succession and knowledge transfer plans
- Evaluate effectiveness
Ideally, a business should create a succession plan as soon as possible to be prepared for the different scenarios requiring a succession or transition plan that may arise. You should allow five to seven years to create and carry out the plan, so you have enough time to implement it.
Succession plans should be shared with the employees identified as leading the transition. The plan should be circulated with follow-up meetings to review the plan, roles, responsibilities and objectives, facilitate information transfers, and address any questions.
However, communicating a succession plan with employees is done on a case-by-case basis as each business will have a custom plan and timeline to execute.
By defining the metrics that will be used to assess the activity, engagement, and performance of the business throughout the execution of the succession plan, you’ll be able to identify whether or not it’s working.
Our team of chartered professional accountants (CPAs) work with clients across Southern Ontario, including:
- St. Catharines