When it comes to finance, no family business has the luxury of hoarding cash forever. Time will force the issue. We find that when a family firm reaches the third or fourth generation, it typically runs out of cash and the owners must rethink how to finance the business. Change is thrust upon them.

As the business and the family each get older and bigger, certain things become inevitable: Even with the best of estate planning, the family will have to face death taxes; the business must change and transform; capital will be needed to grow or start new businesses; and very likely, by this time, one or more family members will want to be bought out. 所有这些货币问题都对企业资本提出了巨大的、往往相互矛盾的要求, demands that usually exceed a private family business’ financial resources.

Because they want to maintain as much independence as possible, 据m88体育所知,许多家族企业倾向于拒绝一些显而易见的融资上市的可能性, seeking outside private investors, or taking on an equity or joint venture partner. 他们也不愿意去银行借比以前更多的钱. Another possibility is to sell part of the business, and while doing so is not unusual, some families just don’t like that option.

The point is, 许多家庭不得不改变他们对企业融资的态度,改变他们的融资模式,以找到他们目前还不需要找到的资金来源. 在这种情况下,家庭成员可能需要超越他们的舒适区和他们的文化. A “no-debt” tradition, for example, just may not work anymore.

One option is to develop a different strategic perspective about your business. Perhaps over time, you change your business so that it becomes less capital intensive. For example, 如果你的企业需要大量的资金来建造新的设施或购买新的设备, 你可能会把企业从建造和拥有设施变成运营其他人拥有的设施. The Marriott Corporation has done just that. 作为一家优秀的酒店运营商,它意识到自己并不需要拥有自己经营的所有酒店. Instead, 该公司将其备受尊敬的家族品牌放在别人拥有的酒店上,并开始通过运营盈利.

另一个m88体育知道的家族企业,传统上用自己的资本为家族投资组合的房地产开发融资, began to invite others to invest in specific projects. 对项目收取的建设和物业管理费成为重要的新收入来源.

你可能会发现业务增长策略需要的资金比例比你过去需要的要小——租赁物业或设备而不是购买, for example, 或者将你的企业转变为服务企业,而不是制造企业. Rather than building a new factory, for example, m88体育知道一个家族企业承包了一个现有的拉丁美洲工厂的生产.

Families that are very clever, farsighted and successful are aware of the fact that eventually, they are going to need more capital than they have traditionally had access to. m88体育发现,他们在调整业务或调整他们对业务的态度方面往往非常有创造力,使他们能够使用不同于他们过去考虑的方式获得新的资金. 有些人在不牺牲自己的目标或利益的情况下,找到了使用他人钱财的方法, 还有一些人在文化上改变了自己,变得更愿意利用债务、合作伙伴或偶尔出售部分业务. 他们意识到,这些方法可以是保持家族企业繁荣发展的方法.

You don’t want to wait until the third or fourth generation, however, 在你获得这个快速变化的时代所需要的更成熟的金融知识之前. 无论企业处于哪个阶段,许多财务问题都需要家庭关注, 包括观察你们的股利政策和实践以及它们如何影响你们公司的创新能力, what financial strategy you should follow in order to change and grow, and where you can secure financial resources for the future. 如果你的公司还没有一个训练有素、经验丰富的首席财务官, it’s time to consider hiring one. 帮助不参与企业的家族股东理解“投资回报”和“负债权益比率”等概念也非常重要. 正如一位第三代CEO告诉m88体育的那样:“我曾经认为,与表兄弟们争论估值方法将是我最糟糕的噩梦. But it turned out to be a rather stimulating and enlightening discussion.”

Reprinted from Make Change Your Family Business Tradition.