Discussion on business succession in agriculture
Company succession in agriculture

Discussion on business succession in agriculture

Succession in agriculture is a major issue that many people ignore. Many family farms that have been in family hands for generations are currently faced with the question of how the generation change can be successfully managed. In many respects, the preparation for a business succession in agriculture and forestry is similar to the generation change in production, craft and service enterprises.

In the succession talk, which took place for the first time, the Wirtschaftsjunioren Segeberg intensively discussed the upcoming wave of business successions in Schleswig-Holstein.

Company succession in agriculture is often initiated at a very late stage

Think earlier, think later? Company succession? was the topic that led the Junior Chamber to the Pettluis estate. Sven Boysen, publishing director of Regenta Kommunikation, moderated the discussion of the three panel guests in a very lively, sometimes provocative and creative and solution-oriented manner: farmer and entrepreneur Hans-Peter Goldnick from Hornbrooker Hof, Ch. Weigmann, K.E.R.N ? Die Nachfolgespezialisten and Uwe Gätjens, Head of Corporate Clients at Sparkasse Südholstein. The experts acted out a (fictitious) succession situation in a medium-sized business. A handover process was illustrated very vividly, supported by the audience and with examples from the experts' wealth of experience.

Everyone agreed that one should start thinking about organising succession at an early stage. The best time is from the end of one's 40s. In practice, however, this consideration usually takes place ten years later. The experts pointed out that it is not only the shortage of skilled workers that is causing problems for companies nationwide. As a consequence, entrepreneurs who are ready to hand over their businesses are confronted with a lack of suitable successors.

Lack of entrepreneurs complicates generation change in agricultural and forestry enterprises

Finding a successor and a suitable succession solution is a major challenge, especially in agricultural and forestry enterprises. The panelists agreed that many factors play an important role. It has to fit at all levels and for all parties involved, because not only the exiting entrepreneur and the potential successor have to come to an agreement. In the end, the bank, partners and family must also agree with the arrangement.

The better and more thoroughly the succession is discussed openly and honestly by all sides, the more successful the future will be for the company even after the handover. Many stumbling blocks lurk along the way. Experts with handover experience help to avoid mistakes, recognise conflicts at an early stage and avoid expensive restarts of a process.

Anyone who dreams of taking over the succession in a company should contact the corporate client department of their bank or, for example, a succession specialist such as K.E.R.N. Here, the advisors usually know which small craft business or family-run 'hidden champion' is facing a succession outside the family. Here, the advisors usually know in which small craft business or family-run "hidden champion" a succession outside the family is pending.

Tips for further reading:

Comment: Unresolved company successions endanger our prosperity

The 5 most important contents of an entrepreneurial emergency kit

Interview: Preparing the succession within the family well

Many business successions in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern are not optimally prepared

The 5 most important points after buying a company

Lack of entrepreneurs also affects Hessian economy

Photo: Junior Chamber of Commerce Bad Segeberg