Family businesses in Yorkshire are confident and positive about the future, according to the results of a new survey released today by leading York accountants Garbutt & Elliott.
The survey revealed that the profitability of family businesses had increased during the past year. Nearly two thirds described their financial position as “good” or “excellent”.
Most family businesses expected the economic situation in the UK to improve over the next 12 months, the survey found. Very few respondents expected the economy to get worse within the next year.
“Our survey is extremely positive and encouraging. Family businesses are the lifeblood of the Yorkshire and UK economy and, if they are confident about the future, then that really is very good news,” said Craig Manson, partner in charge of Garbutt & Elliott’s family business team.
“Whilst there are clearly challenges ahead, as the country emerges from a deep recession family businesses across the county seem to be in very robust health.”
In the wake of this survey, Garbutt & Elliott will be hosting a family business seminar at on Wednesday, October 23 at Hazlewood Castle, near Tadcaster from 8.30am until 12 noon.
Mr Manson said there was another striking aspect to the survey: the lack of written agreements among family members in business together.
“This is significant as the lack of these types of governance plans could potentially lead to conflict or confusion for family businesses,” he said. “The survey results highlight that, for family businesses which can often have strong cultures and leadership, disagreements and the emotion generated by them can be reduced by setting up a Family Constitution.”
Fewer than a third of these business had undertaken any formal succession planning, even though most expected to pass the business on to relatives within ten ears. “Planning for the next generation is vital,” Mr Manson said.
The survey was carried out in conjunction with Praxity, the largest global network of independent accountancy firms.