Your Business Future

Your 'exit strategy' may be to look for a buyer for your business or you may see it staying within the family or passing to key staff. Whatever the preferred 'exit route', it pays to form a succession plan early, and SWLaw Solicitors can assist you with this.

Too often, in the absence of a clear plan, decisions are forced on business owners by circumstances beyond their control including health considerations. Early succession planning is important to maximise the return from the business and to ensure that the change in ownership is as seamless as possible. SWLaw takes the view that your exit strategy should be part of your business plan and should be reviewed frequently as part of that wider plan.

There are a host of options available, each with its own advantages and drawbacks. Options include:

  • Transfer to a successor
  • Merger
  • Sale in the open market
  • Flotation
  • Closure

The exit route, and likely timing, may well influence other aspects of business planning, and may require some years of planning. It is never too early to consider your exit strategy


Family-owned businesses form a very important part of the economy in Devon and the UK generally. They can be very successful and profitable, but also face some challenges not necessarily associated with business. Family dynamics play an extraordinarily key part. Handled intelligently, they can contribute to the overall health of the firm. Mismanaged, and they can spell financial and domestic disaster. The stage that often brings about the most grief, is that of business succession. SWLaw has helped a number of family firms through what can otherwise become a traumatic transition. In many cases we find that the older generation is reluctant to hand over the reins. In some cases, marriage breakdown can exert enormous strain. Very quickly, financial, taxation and domestic consequences can accumulate, often threatening the very survival of the business.

Help is at hand, and SWLaw works to understand the complexities of each situation. Our solicitors will work to provide the expert advice, and set out creative solutions for the difficulties you face. We can also involve our financial advisers should you wish, further ensuring that the solutions that are set in place, meet the needs of all the family.

Issues you may wish to consider:

  • How best to hold and manage the capital assets of the business
  • Who should best lead the business into the future
  • How to work out how many members of the family the firm can realistically support
  • Providing for family members not involved in the business
  • Making sure that the older generation has adequate pension provision

Working with our associated financial advisers, we can compile a comprehensive package of advice which will enable your family firm to continue and thrive.