Family Business Advisory

AB has developed a unique and customized Family Business Advisory practice over the last 33 years. We recognize that family-owned businesses- whether entirely privately owned, or partially publicly owned, with a dominant equity ownership held by family shareholders- have unique characteristics which require a special focus and custom- tailored services. Over our history, our largest-scale and most challenging assignments have come from family owned businesses. Advising such businesses inevitably involves a careful approach to the intersection of the family and personal considerations of ownership, coupled with strategic considerations of the future of the business and the preservation of family wealth. Examining these issues and their impact on a family-owned company’s strategic and financial choices requires experience, sensitivity and in-depth industry knowledge.

The firm has extensive experience with such family-controlled businesses. As a privately-held firm, we find our internal culture is compatible with those of the family-owned businesses for which we have provided corporate financial advisory services. The firm understands the difficultly certain family run business face in spending the resources to have proper controls and systems coupled with the task of bringing in professional management to achieve this and other roles within the company.

The firm has advised family businesses on the following: mergers and acquisitions, financing, special dividend recapitalizations, succession issues, managing the transition to a more professional and structured non-family management style, and the creation or revision of corporate governance and ownership structures consistent with changing the family and company’s needs.

Case Study:

The firm has enjoyed considerable success over our history in achieving extraordinary results for family-owned businesses. An example of this success was our engagement advising the family which owned and operated VitalChek Network, Inc. The firm advised the family- operated company for five years after VitalChek first received an unsolicited purchase offer from a strategic competitor. We spent five years advising the company in its dramatic growth over this period. In 2002, we ran a very competitive auction with some of the largest public transaction processing, data brokerage and document processing companies in the market. The firm was able to sell the company at a price at closing equal to 30 times the initial unsolicited offer in 1997. We have achieved similar results for other closely-held businesses over our history – see the “Transaction History” section of this site for further examples.

The firm has developed its Family Business Advisory practice with the specific goal of assuring that no family-owned business need approach with apprehension the process of seeking a strategic partner, raising equity or debt capital, or selling the company in order to meet family goals, so long as it has the assistance of an experienced financial advisor dedicated to its needs, a role we believe Akin Bay is uniquely suited to fulfill.