Negotiating the Acquisition of Family Owned Businesses

About the Course:

If you are involved with acquisitions, you must understand the nuances of acquiring family owned businesses. In the United States, family businesses account for 60 percent of total employment and half of the nation's gross domestic product. More than half of all public companies in the United States - and 80 percent of the world's businesses - are family controlled.

During this session Edward Rosenfeld discusses his experience in selling his family's business to Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway.

Among the issues that discussed during this session are:

  • How family members can impress upon the founder the importance of relenting to acquisition overtures
  • How to leverage the soft issues - retaining company name, maintaining commitment to the community, keeping loyal personnel employed - in negotiations
  • What steps a family should undertake to prepare its company for sale
  • What are some of the due diligence challenges acquirers should expect when attempting to acquire a family owned business
  • Importance of creating wealth outside of the business for purposes of estate planning
  • Importance of creating and maintaining Family Charters
  • Setting up an ownership structure that minimizes tax liabilities
  • Using life insurance to fund taxes and provide inheritance funds
  • Learning about sensitivities to closing dates due to tax reasons

Course Leader: Edward Rosenfeld, President, Foresight Advisors

After selling his second generation family residential and office furniture rental business of which he was CEO to Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway Corporation, Ed became a family business consultant. Ed has diverse business management and entrepreneurial expertise in the retail, manufacturing, distribution, real estate, and energy management businesses.

His practice focuses on strategic planning, succession planning, governance and family legacy.

He has been active in the Family Firm Institute, The Estate Planning Council of New York and the Association for Conflict Resolution. Ed has Bachelors and Masters Social Science degrees from Columbia University. He received mediator training through the Bar Association of the City of New York, The Center for Mediation in Law and New York University's Mediator Training Program and completed the specialized SuccessCare(R) Program for training family business consultants. He has been active in several progressive business organizations including Business Leaders for Sensible Priorities, Business for Social Responsibility and The Small Business Majority and currently serves on the Advisory Board of Cleantech Corridor.

Course Length: Approx. 1 hours


Purchase Now:

Need help purchasing this course? Please contact Neomi Barazani at 609-919-1895 ext. 100 or at