“The family counsel should conduct and supervise the professional management of family business assets”
Assets management in family business, the country’s main source of wealth and, was the topic analyzed in the show Diálogos at La Vanguardia, held last week with the presence of Amadeu Jori, President of the Catalonian Association of Family Business (ASCEF). Other participants were Josep Tàpies, IESE Professor Emeritus specialized in family business; Antoni Murt, EY Associate in Barcelona; José Alarcón, Andbank General Business Director in Spain and Pere Guardiola, Godó Strategies‘ CEO.
Amadeu Jori stated that most of the successful family businesses set assets growth as their priority goal in order to ensure their continuity in the future. In this way, ASCEF President acknowledged that professionalization is a recurrent debate among family businesses: “It means finding the best people to run the business, whether they are family members or not, both on a daily basis and among government bodies. There are more doubts in the field of assets management, but it is obvious that it is also necessary. However, it is never to be neglected, instead the management conducted by professionals should be watched upon closely“.
“Much is said about the need to professionalize leadership and business management, but the importance of professionalizing assets management is not so valued, something that requires an appropriate specialization“, explained Alarcon, who advocates that assets management professionalization “is more important as family generations advance as it becomes more difficult to harmonize the interests of each family member“. “Family assets management must be aligned with the legacy, which constitute the set of values of each family business“, he added.
“The main goal of family businessmen is always to think of the business and create business. The surplus is either invested on the business, on starting a new one or on current businesses” explained Amadeu Jori. ASCEF President favors the commission of assets management to professionals but insisted on the need for a very close administration and supervision by the family counsel.
Professor Tàpies deems it necessary to professionalize finance management, “but you need to let this professional know what is expected and define how much risk and volatility you are willing to assume“. “Watching over intangible family business assets is as important as doing it for financial assets“, he added.
Meanwhile, Antoni Murt regretted the lack of a legal and tax system specific of family businesses. He thinks that proceeds reinvestment and assets accumulation are not being protected, which is part of the family business strategy to prepare for the future.
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