Taking over a family business

Family businesses account for 25% of the British economy and there are over 12.2 million people employed by family businesses in the UK. Family businesses are a thriving sector that help stimulate the economy and often work with accountants and financial advisors.

They form an important part of our local communities and are the backbone of our economy. Whilst you may have been waiting in line to take over a business, there are a number of pros and cons to taking over a family business that you need to consider. 

Read on to find out more about the advantages and disadvantages of taking over a family business. Contact us to see how Alexander & Co can help.

Advantages of taking over a family business

No need to start from scratch

If you’re about to take over the family business, you’re not only becoming a first-time business owner, but you’re also getting a head start on building a business. You will already have an established brand, business model, customer-base and income. The company will also have existing agreements and relationships with vendors, banks and investors.

If you had started your own business, these types of relationships and years of operating within the industry would have taken years to build. Growing up in a family business also gives you prior insight into the inner workings of the business, industry and your customers, reducing the learning curve.

Inherit a knowledgeable workforce

You won’t need to waste time or resources building a talented workforce. By taking over the family business, you will already have talented and trained employees working for you. They will have previously worked with customers and vendors and will know how the business functions, making the whole transition to you a lot smoother.

Ensure it remains a family business

Family businesses are not only important to the economy of the UK, but they also form an essential part of the local communities they serve. Contributing to the local economy, providing jobs and in some cases, being an institution with years of local history. Carrying on this legacy for your family and the local community is not just a huge responsibility, but it can also be extremely rewarding.

Find out how we can help family businesses.

Disadvantages of taking over a family business

Prepare for family intervention

One of the biggest challenges of a family business is balancing the various members of the family and not letting your work life crossover into your personal relationships. You should prepare yourself for members of your family to intervene if you’re taking over the family business.

The true state of the business

Once you take over the family business, you’re getting it with all its baggage, good or bad. You’ll be tasked with settling any disputes, maintaining and boosting the morale of the employees as well as possibly having to upgrade the technology or processes to modernise the business. Often, restructuring a family business to make it more efficient can take time, so it’s good to plan ahead.

One way to make appropriate changes to ensure you make a positive impact is by appointing a specialist family business accountant. At Alexander & Co we have a proven track record of helping family businesses grow and can assist you in rectifying any issues you’ve been left with after taking over the family business.

Contact us to find out more.

You aren’t taken seriously

If you’ve been selected to take over the family business, you may struggle to put your stamp on things. Clients, employees and suppliers may disregard you before you’ve had a chance to make your mark, based on the fact that you were born into the family business. You may be faced with resistance to any changes as ‘that’s not how things were done previously’.

When taking over the family business it’s important you perform your due diligence. Whilst you may think you know the business you should seek help and guidance from professional family business advisors.

Family business accountants

There are many complexities in family owned businesse and the initial steps of taking over the family business can be a stressful time. This can be made easier by reaching out to our accountants. We can give assistance with your tax and accounting needs as well as your business growth aspirations.

We have many years experience in assisting family businesses and work with a range of sectors.

Get in touch with Alexander & Co.

At Alexander & Co. our expert team of family business accountants has a wealth of knowledge and experience to provide you with specialist advice, helping you to continue growing the family business. Please fill out this form below, and we will be in touch.

You can also contact our London and Manchester accountants today to see how we can help you with this important transition.


Quick Contact

We would love to hear from you. Please fill out this form and we will be in touch.

Previous Article

Talking Family Business with Berry Bros & Rudd

Next Article

guide to self-assessment

A step by step guide to self-assessment

Contact a professional now