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Penn State Smeal event to address complexities facing entrepreneurs

April 19, 2017

The Penn State Smeal College of Business is collaborating with the Penn State Office of Gift Planning and the Gift Planning Advisory Council to present a family business symposium. The event is designed to offer University alumni and friends who are engaged in entrepreneurial ventures—or those who have assumed roles in family businesses—tools to navigate the complexities associated with those businesses. 

“Your Business, Your Family, Your Legacy: Serving Entrepreneurs — The University's Land Grant Mission” is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday in the Business Building.  

Attorneys, CPAs, and allied professionals from the Gift Planning Advisory Council will share expertise and insight on taxes, private wealth planning, exit strategies, and family governance. 

“Many business owners have a hard time distinguishing between their business and family legacies. This seminar will help address challenges faced when the ‘family business’ is transitioned to family as part of a legacy and also if the family’s ‘legacy’ is not the business, how the business owner’s legacy is transitioned to others,” said Tom Hoffman, an attorney with Knox McLaughlin Gornall & Sennett, P.C. and a member of the Gift Planning Advisory Council. 

The symposium will include six separate information sessions: 

  • Penn State and Family Owned Businesses
  • Five Ways to Exit a Business
  • Legal and Tax Aspects — Learn the Structure Necessary to Protect Your Legacy
  • Private Wealth Planning — Financial Strategies to Help Determine When You Can ‘Afford’ to Retire
  • Exit Strategies that Work —A Primer on Evaluating and Choosing the Best Exit Option for Your Company
  • Family Governance Planning

Penn State’s alumni impact the world through entrepreneurial innovations and ventures than can change the way people live and work, improve the society’s standard of living, create social change, and bring prosperity to society. That’s why the planners hope this is the first of many such symposiums. 

“We are excited about this opportunity for business owners and hope to make it an annual event,” said Michael J. Degenhart, assistant vice president for Penn State Office of Gift Planning. “We also hope to replicate it in other locations around the region, reaching more and more Penn State alumni and supporters.” 

The symposium is sponsored by Brown Brothers Harriman and Wilmington Trust.

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Andy Elder
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