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Navigating succession planning for families in the GCC

Navigating succession planning for families in the GCC

21 November, 2023

Family businesses in the GCC are recognising the vital importance of succession planning to ensure a seamless transition of wealth and leadership to the next generation. Nina Auchoybur, Managing Director, UAE recently attended the Wealth & Investment Summit 2023 in Dubai, during which she joined a panel discussion on ‘Middle Eastern Succession Planning in a Growing Modern Economy’. In this article, Nina shares her insights from the event, including the key factors driving succession planning in the GCC.

What are the key succession planning strategies for GCC families?

  1. Fostering open communication: Encouraging transparent communication, discussing family values, financial goals, and expectations for the future.

  2. Educating family members: Providing a comprehensive financial education, including estate planning, tax implications, and investment diversification.

  3. Structured training & development: Establishing a formalised training programme with mentorship from experienced family members and external experts.

  4. Seeking professional expertise: Engage with wealth managers, estate planning attorneys, and family business consultants to navigate complexities.

  5. Aligning with regional developments: Adaptability to the evolving economic and regulatory landscape of the region.

  6. Next generation involvement: Actively involve the next generation in the planning process to prepare them for leadership roles.

  7. Establishing clear governance structures: Introducing transparent governance structures for efficient decision-making.

  8. Addressing philanthropic goals: Integrate philanthropy into succession planning to allow family members to express their values whilst managing their wealth and making a positive impact on society.

  9. Reviewing & updating: Regularly review and update plans to remain relevant and effective over time.

  10. Seeking professional guidance: Maintain relationships with professional advisors for continuous support as circumstances evolve.

What are the factors driving succession planning in the GCC?

  • Rapid economic growth: Significant economic growth and diversification have led to complex asset portfolios, necessitating professional expertise.

  • Evolving family structures: Changing family dynamics, with members pursuing independent careers and living abroad, require consideration of cross-border implications.

  • Family business prominence: Family-owned businesses play a crucial role in the GCC economies, demanding careful succession planning for continuity and success.

  • Awareness of planning benefits: Growing awareness of risks associated with poor planning has increased the demand for professional guidance.

  • Emphasis on professionalism: A growing emphasis on professionalism and expertise has led families to seek qualified professionals for succession planning.

How can Ocorian help with succession planning in the GCC?

Our primary focus in the GCC is to work with families, assisting them in setting up and supporting family offices, and structuring their wealth for the next generation. Ocorian has decades worth of experience regarding the issues that come with intergenerational wealth transfer and succession planning and work closely with the second and third generations of many of our client families.

Contact our team today to find out more about our succession planning services.