Growth, liquidity and control are all interests core to private business owners, but they don’t always align. In the feature article of this issue, BBH Partner Kathryn George speaks with Rob Lachenauer, Managing Partner of BanyanGlobal and co-author (with Josh Baron) of the Harvard Business Review “Family Business Handbook: How to Build and Sustain a Successful, Enduring Enterprise,” and Ben Persofsky, Executive Director of the BBH Center for Family Business, about the complications that arise around these strategic decisions when there are multiple owners with different priorities and how private business owners can best manage these competing interests.
Turning to the other pages of this edition, we sit down with Victoria Mars, former chairman and first corporate ombudsman of Mars, which is a family-owned business in pet care, confections and food founded in 1911. Victoria is a fourth-generation family member, and we spoke about running a successful family business for 110 years, engaging family members after five generations and leveraging values and principles to maintain focus. In another article, we examine the story of Madam C.J. Walker, America’s first female self-made millionaire and a Black woman, which offers some useful lessons for the intersection of business, personal values and philanthropy.
As always, Thomas Martin, Matt Sweetser and Christine Hourihan provide an overview of the economy, credit markets and private equity and mergers and acquisitions markets in the Business Environment.