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Against the sands of time

Withstanding the effects of time requires a well-constructed succession plan that is periodically reviewed, advises Suzannah Farnell

16 March 2016

No-one is immortal. But companies are different: they can live forever. Take mobile giant Nokia for example, which began life as a pulp mill in 1865, while Colgate-Palmolive and DuPont are also more than 150 years old, and still going strong.

Browse through a list of prominent family businesses in the UK and even older examples stand out - wine merchants Berry Bros & Rudd (founded in 1698); hatters James Lock (1676);
and private bankers C. Hoare & Co. (1672) - all are still owned and part-managed by the original founding families.

A Barclays report, 'Family Affair: Spotlight on UK Family SMEs', found that family businesses contribute £180bn a year to the UK economy, with some boasting very impressive turnovers.

Despite this success, only around
30 per cent of family businesses in Britain survive into the second...

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