Thursday, September 2, 2010

Succession Strategies and Location Advice

I had the privilege of meeting Rachel Owens and Bill Sorenstein last Friday. Bill and Rachel own a company called Succession Strategies Their business is providing a holistic succession planning approach to small closely held, family owned businesses...from real estate, to estate planning, to family councils, to life insurance, to profit sharing, etc. I thoroughly enjoyed our meeting and took away two new business relationships that I know will become beneficial to all of us.

I relate to the advice that Rachel and Bill provide on three levels...personal, employee, and business.

My Dad was a second generation family business owner. His Father had founded the Buchanan Bottling Company in the 1930s. Their family of five worked diligently in the business for 30 years. My Dad was instrumental in the growth of the company...his two brothers were not as they pursued academia and the ministry. In the mid 1960's, my Dad's emergence as general manager and my Granddad's reluctance to relinquish control of the company created a maelstrom of disagreement which nearly resulted in our family's break from the company and relocation to another state. I witnessed death, divorce, alcoholism, and adversity on a first hand basis. Fortunately, a happy ending occurred as the business was sold at a significant profit in 1986 and my Dad and his brother (another brother died in 1985) were able to retire and live comfortably.

I was recruited by the E and J Gallo Winery in 1982 from my previous employer, Procter and Gamble Distributing Company. Gallo is the one of the nation's largest family owned businesses. I witnessed many dysfunctional decisions...many good ones as well...during my two years there.

I provide location advice to owners and occupants of industrial buildings in Southern California. Frequently, these are owners of family businesses. With an aging population and tax rules that will penalize the transfer of family business ownership, ALL small family owned businesses need to have a succession plan. Rachel Owens and Bill Sornstein can help. Give them a call!

Succession Strategies®

1633 E. Fourth Street
Suite 216
Santa Ana, CA 92701

Phone: 714-560-9022
Fax: 714-560-0422

Rachel Owens
Phone: 714-560-9022 Fax: 714-560-0422

Bill Sornstein
Phone: 714-560-1679 Fax: 714-560-0422