ESOP: The Ideal Business Transition Option
By: Daniel M. Zugell, CLU, ChFC, LUTCF and Samuel A. Landman J.D., LL.M.
With 10,000 baby boomers (those born between 1946-1964) turning 65 each day for the next two decades, it is no surprise that most are looking to retire. According to a recent Price Waterhouse Coopers report, 62% of the U.S. companies planning to monetize their business will do so within the next 5-6 years. It is projected to be the biggest transfer of wealth in U.S. history, estimated at $15 trillion or more over the next 15 years. Many baby boomer-owned companies fall into this category and are considering how to transfer their business and enjoy the fruits of decades of hard work.
Employee Stock Ownership Plans (also referred to as ESOPs) are continuing to gain strong momentum as baby boomers look to transfer their businesses in a way that best suits their families’ goals and objectives. Most are family businesses whose goal is to perpetuate the business into the next generation or key management, but giving the business away is not a viable option especially when the next generation often cannot afford or even borrow the purchase price.
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