Conscientious investor

Investing today to help make a better tomorrow

In a fast-changing world, sustainability is a growing concern for investors. Sustainable investing funds position investors to manage the risks associated with environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors, capture the opportunities and contribute to positive change.

Grandparents, grandchildren and money

Sharing your wealth during your lifetime can make a big difference

With all of us leading longer lives, you might be considering how you can help your family when it matters most. Sharing your wealth during your lifetime can make a big difference and bring you a lot of joy, particularly when helping younger generations who are dealing with rising house prices and university fees.

Pension lifetime allowance

How to stay within the limit to avoid a tax charge

If you’ve been diligently saving into a pension throughout your working life, you should be entitled to feel confident about your retirement. But, unfortunately, the best savers sometimes find themselves inadvertently breaching their pension lifetime allowance (LTA) and being charged an additional tax that erodes their savings.

Boost your pension savings

Planning to achieve your retirement goals sooner

Are you ‘mid or late career’ or planning to retire within ten years? If the answer’s ‘yes’, then you probably want to know the answers to these questions: Will I be able to retire when I want to? Will I run out of money? How can I guarantee the kind of retirement I want?

Minimum pension age to increase

Age change to when people can start taking pension savings

The government has confirmed that it plans to increase the minimum pension age at which benefits under registered pension schemes can generally be accessed, without a tax penalty, from age 55 to age 57 commencing 6 April 2028.

The Bank of Grandma and Grandpa

How to give a helping hand financially to your grandchildren

For many years, adult children have been relying on the ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’ for financial help, to gain a further education or get on the property ladder. But even as they start their own families, it’s increasingly common for these adults to count on their parents’ wealth to secure the lifestyle they want for their children.

Smoothing out market volatility

Pound cost averaging – how to avoid trying to second-guess market movements

The coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak led to the biggest daily drop in the FTSE 100 on 12 March 2020, since the financial crisis. The FTSE 100 fell 9% when markets opened — worse than any single day in 2008 and beaten only by the record figures of 1987’s ‘Black Monday.’

Peace of mind that you’re on the right track

How to plan for a confident retirement to live the lifestyle you want

Retirement might seem a long way off but the later you leave planning for it, the less chance you have of achieving the retirement you want. We all dream of how we’ll spend our retirement but that dream looks different for everyone.

Succession planning

Preparing yourself, your family and your business for the future

The operational demands of running a family business or other closely held enterprise can be all-consuming, but it’s vital that business leaders take the time needed to assess their organisation’s business succession planning.
After pouring years of your life into building a profitable business, it’s natural that you’ll want to pass it on to someone who will take equal care of it, whether that’s a member of your family or a buyer. That’s why succession planning is so important.
In the context of your business, succession planning is the process that ensures a smooth transition in ownership from you to someone else, so that a new owner can continue to pursue your company’s goals.

Why is succession planning important?

A succession plan can help to leave the business without negative repercussions, secure your legacy at the company, ensure a seamless transition to new management and reassure employees and stakeholders.

What are your succession planning options?

The three most common options are:

1. Keeping the business in your family
You might want to pass on your business to a family member, such as an adult child. While this option has many benefits, the relationships and emotions involved can make objectivity difficult, so it can help to involve an external adviser who can remain impartial.
2. Selling the business
It can be difficult to find a buyer with the skill and expertise to run your business, and the inclination to do so. But once you find them, this option can be profitable and strategically successful.
3. Management buyout (MBO)
Another option is for your company’s managers to become owners by raising the finances together. This can be the best way to ensure continuity of your business’s progress towards its goals, as the same team continue to operate it and service customers.

How can you ensure successful succession planning?

A successful succession plan takes time and dedication. It will be unique to your business. But all good plans involve the following steps:

Goal setting
Consider your personal goals and the goals of the business. You may have shareholders or other stakeholders whose goals you must consider.
Timeline planning
You need to establish the date you’re working towards, which may be definite, for example, your retirement at a specific age or indefinite, your eventual death.
Communication
Keep your employees, customers and clients informed. When people feel ‘out of the loop’, they get uneasy and you may lose them.
Seeking professional advice
You’ll likely only create a succession plan once. So, to maximise your chances of success, speak to a professional adviser who’s helped other businesses create theirs. An expert’s perspective provides insights you may not be aware of and keeps your plans on track.
Succession planning checklist 
For a business, working without a succession plan can invite disruption, uncertainty and conflict, and may endanger your future competitiveness. Do you know the answers to these ten questions?
1. Have you defined your personal goals and a vision for the transfer of ownership and management of the company?
2. Do you have an identified successor in place?
3. If applicable, have you resolved the family issues that often accompany leadership and ownership decisions?
4. Does your plan include a strategy to reduce estate taxes?
5. Will there be sufficient liquidity to avoid the forced sale of the business?
6. If succession will one day require the transfer of assets, have you executed a ‘buy-sell’ agreement that details the process ahead of time?
7. Is there a detailed contingency plan in case you die or become unable to continue working sooner than anticipated?
8. Have you identified and considered alternative corporate structures or stock-transfer techniques that might help the company achieve its succession goals?
9. Have you determined whether you or anyone else will depend upon the business to meet retirement cash flow needs?
10. Have you recently had the business valued and analysed in the same way potential buyers and competitors would?

Do you have a comprehensive financial plan? 

Succession planning is a complex process that draws upon many business disciplines. There are many benefits for companies and owners who plan properly and strategically for an orderly transition of management and ownership. To find out more, please contact us.