:: buzz / newsflash
ALL IN THE FAMILY
U.S. family businesses are increasingly confident about
their growth prospects and are poised to capitalize on new
opportunities, according to a PricewaterhouseCoopers,
LLP (PwC) news release regarding its latest Global Family
Business Survey, released in October 2012.
While confidence exists, survey respondents high- lighted the challenges and key focal points they
will face in 2013 and beyond:
•;68 percent cited market conditions as a main issue
over the next 12 months, waning from 88 percent
two years ago suggesting that family businesses have
adapted to market volatility and economic uncertainty.
•;58 percent cited the need to continually innovate as a
top challenge over the next five years, indicating they
must out-innovate peers to ensure the long-term viability of their companies.
•;47 percent are venturing abroad, selling goods and
services outside their customary domestic markets;
54 percent also expect to be selling internationally in
•;39 percent said the need for new technology will be
a substantial challenge in five years’ time. Social media, mobile devices and cloud computing have leveled
the playing field for many family businesses. Still, they
will need to keep pace with and effectively harness
•;38 percent indicated succession planning will pose a
substantial challenge five years from now. Too often,
family businesses either do not have a formal succession plan or loose one that is rarely revisited. This can
adversely affect not only the company’s longevity, but
also its near-term health.
Electric vehicles (EV) continue to emerge in the marketplace, causing commercial real estate investors and managers to consider integrating EV charging
stations into their properties. Consumer concerns over
EV driving distance capabilities and payment for public electric charging are two issues holding back mass
adoption. General Motors, however, announced in November the development of two smart phone apps to
address these concerns for EV drivers. One app will
help EV drivers find charging stations on their routes;
the other app will allow drivers to pay for EV charge-ups with their phones. With enhanced EV technology
on the way, property owners and managers might consider investigating if charging stations are a viable option for their properties.