The Center was invited to contribute scholars' perspectives in the 2017 Noah Forum on Global Family Wealth Management conducted in March.
Prof. Roger King, the Center Director, delivered a speech on the existing situation of Chinese family businesses based on its latest research studies. He walked through the audience with the landscape of Chinese family businesses of the tiem. He mentioned the concept of Chinese family business and privately owned businesses began from 1980s. Most of Chinese family businesses were on the process of passing from the first generation to the second. Century-old family businesses were rare in China, yet names were well-known internationally, such as Li and Fung, Lee Kum Kee and Wing On in Hong Kong; some family businesses were originally developed in China and gradually expanded their businesses in other Asian regions and have moved their headquarters aboard such as Tai Chong Cheang Group and Eu Yan Sang. These businesses successfully integrated the essential values between the east and the west, and preserving the precious wisdom across regions. He advocated 3Ps for family businesses: Preservation of wealth, Preservation of family values and legacy and Preservation of harmony.
In the panel discussion session on "Family Office and Wealth Succession", Prof. Winnie Peng, the Associate Director of the Center, revealed many family businesses in the Asian region lack competitiveness as their business models could be reproduced too readily, consequentially, they tend not to trust professional managers in the businesses. Setting up a single family office could only be meaningful if a family business asset reaches USD300 millions, with reference to the international standard. The entry point could, therefore, be demanding to many family businesses. In view of these concerns, professional managers should learn how to collaborate with family business members, engaging them in managing the family office, in particular the non-financial matters. Such engagement would be crucial for gluing the family together.