In this issue
Decisions at the J.M. Huber Corporation are made with the long view in mind: How should the business evolve so it can succeed for another 136 years? How can a family with hundreds of members sustain its ownership of a $2.3 billion manufacturing company with operations in 20 countries? And how can the company use the natural resources required to make its products in a sustainable way?
Nearly 100 years ago, Pierre S. du Pont was concerned about the difficulties future du Ponts would face as a result of the fortune being generated by the young chemical giant of the same name.
Do your homework
• Determine your advisory needs. Do you require financial planning, estate planning and trust services? Will you need lending, insurance, philanthropic and tax planning advice? Do you want assistance with business governance and succession planning?
• Write down your expectations of your wealth adviser. Be able to clearly describe what you are seeking. Prepare an evaluation “scorecard” in advance and decide which will be the most important factors.
Instituting term or age limits for directors is a way to ensure you have the right board members to help your family business grow and thrive in today’s competitive marketplace. Requiring directors to step down once they have served a predetermined number of terms or reached a certain age takes emotions out of the equation because the board members know in advance when they’ll need to step down.
In order for a family business to survive past the third generation, the extended family must resolve to put their personal interests aside and make decisions that are best for the business. The larger and more diverse the family grows, the more challenging it is to achieve that goal.
Haws, based in Sparks, Nev., and part of Traynor Family Enterprise, was founded in 1906 with the invention of the drinking fountain. The company today provides hydration systems as well as engineered systems for industrial accident emergency response.
In 2007, the Haws family took their initial steps toward building the family governance structure they have in place today.
When 28-year-old Brady lost his mother to a sudden illness, in addition to grief and loss came questions about how to manage a large trust created by his mother. The mother’s estate plan distributed her controlling interest in the family business and other assets into separate trusts for Brady and his siblings, with each trust governed by Brady’s uncle Charlie, as trustee.
Alison Gutterman does not like to clean. Some people do, she realizes, but she’s not one of them. That’s funny, because her family owns Jelmar, the Skokie, Ill.-based company behind CLR and RustX cleaners and a dozen others.
Alison knows she isn’t alone in her disdain for removing stains. Not long ago, Jelmar executives discussed how to motivate people to clean. One suggestion was to harness the power of music.
So Jelmar launched its own channel on Spotify, a popular music-streaming service.
The Business: The Schmid family’s first business venture was the Schmid Brewery in Dubuque, Iowa, founded in 1855 by Titus Schmid, an immigrant from Bavaria, Germany, according to a blog posted on Crescent Electric Supply’s website to commemorate the company’s centennial.