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Manage your business

The Handover: How to prepare your business for the next generation

May 14, 2018



Updated: 11/19/18

Small business owners love what they do. But that doesn't mean they want to do it forever. According to the Chase Business Leaders Outlook survey, nearly one-third of small business owners are looking to sell or transfer ownership of their company within the next five years. That represents a significant leap from the previous year, when just 20 percent said they planned to move on soon.

Fueling that trend is demographics and a strong economy. More than half of today's small business owners are 50 or older, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. Meanwhile, the relatively hot economy has encouraged cashing out. Sales of small businesses reached a record high in 2017, according to online business market place BizBuySell.

Yet, for the small business owner who has spent countless hours nurturing her firm's success, the prospect of leaving it in someone else's hands can be daunting, and fraught with complex emotions. Faced with tough decisions, many small business owners ignore succession planning altogether. PwC's 2017 US Family Business Survey found that under a quarter of today's small business owners have a formalized succession plan in place.

That's why Chase created The Handover, an original Chase series that aims to help business owners think more strategically about succession planning. In a series of articles, we'll share insights on some of the most challenging handover issues, such as:

"We're proud to support businesses at any stage–whether they've just hung up an open sign or have been at it for 50 years," says Andrew Kresse, CEO of Business Banking at Chase. "I'm excited to share this new series, which provides relevant content on succession planning to help small businesses succeed at the next stage in their life, and allow their businesses to continue on."

Let us know what you think.