Why You Should Consider Selling Your Business to a Family Office

About the Episode

The personal touch can be hard to find when it comes to selling a business, but family offices can bring the personal touch back into the mix. Father and son Geordie and B.G. Lemmon talk about their family office, Brynavon, and how family offices work in the M&A world. They discuss the differences between a family office, a PE firm, and a strategic buyer, how they make investment decisions, how they work alongside the existing management team, and the long-term perspective they take with their investments.

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“Before you start anything, you better know how you’re going to end. Because if you’re going to sell a business in the long term, you can make decisions – either it’s poor accounting or you’re not setting up a succession plan. You have to set this company up in such a way that if you get hit by the train, it’ll survive. You have to prepare every day like you’re going to sell it the next day”

Geordie Lemmon

In this Episode

3:32 What is a family office?
5:14 What are the typical investments that a family office might invest in?
7:50 What’s the major difference between a private equity firm and a family office?
10:32 Why does a family office have a much longer time horizon than a PE firm, which typically has a 3- to 5-year time horizon?
15:18 How common is it for a family office to bring in other investors?
20:15 Can a family office be as flexible in putting together the terms of a deal and how it is structured as a PE firm or a strategic buyer?
22:35 What are the differences between a family office and a strategic acquirer?
24:21 Why is there so much variation among family offices?
25:47 How is working with a family office different from a business dealing with an individual buyer?
28:20 What criteria does Brynavon look for when considering investing in a company?
31:58 On average, how many businesses does Brynavon look at before they make an acquisition?
36:28 What is a critical piece of advice for entrepreneurs looking to sell their business?
42:32 Advice for fathers and sons working together.

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Resources Mentioned

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Acronyms or Terms Used in This Episode

  • MFO: multi-family office
  • MBO: management buyout

Meet Our Guest

B.G. Lemmon

B.G. Lemmon

Acquisition Analyst

B.G. Lemmon graduated from The Wharton School at The University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Science in Economics, concentrating in Accounting and Legal Studies & Business Ethics. He then worked as an Analyst at Frasca & Associates for two years before joining his dad at their family office, The Brynavon Group.

Since joining Brynavon in 2019, B.G. has had a wide range of jobs, from helping to implement a new ERP system for their business in Nevada, to working on the manufacturing floor at one of their plants, to managing the transaction of their most recent acquisition in Effort Foundry, and helping to launch the real estate portfolio of Brynavon.

Location Location: King of Prussia, Pennsylvania
Website Website: brynavon.com

Meet Our Guest

Geordie Lemmon

Geordie Lemmon

CEO of Brynavon Group

Geordie Lemmon is CEO of his family office, The Brynavon Group, where he was a principal and CFO of Brynavon Group, Inc. from 1989-1994 as well as managing the acquisition program of that firm since 1985. Geordie has over forty years of experience as a principal and a manager of businesses whose revenues are under $50 million. From 1995-2004 Geordie was the President and CEO of Owosso Corporation, which was a $170 million, publicly-traded, diversified manufacturer comprised of 10 operating subsidiaries whose revenues were under $50 million.

Geordie received an MBA from Villanova University and is a graduate of Harvard College. He is currently a principal and a director of several small manufacturing and service companies and has been a Trustee of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and The Children’s Hospital Foundation from 1996-2011. He serves on the advisory board of Day & Zimmerman, which is a $2.0 billion diversified manufacturer and service company with concentrations in the staffing, power, and government service sectors.

Location Location: King of Prussia, Pennsylvania
Website Website: brynavon.com

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