Scanteak: The Making of Successors in a Family Firm (A)
(8 pages of text)
Scanteak Corporation was a furniture retailer founded in Singapore in the 1970s. By 2010, it had established more than 100 stores around the world. It had also become the first furniture company to be listed on the Taiwan OTC (Over-the-Counter) Exchange. The two founders had invested a great deal in developing the business and preparing their children to become their successors. In 2003, the two founders’ daughter joined the company to help grow the family business, achieving great success in brand promotion and market expansion. In 2010, the two founders’ son was asked to help with the business in Singapore or Taiwan but rejected their offer, stating that he would only agree if he could independently run the Japan division of the business, which was in deficit. The two founders questioned whether their recently graduated son could handle the business in Japan, and wondered how to respond to his bold request.
This case can be taught in a succession, next generation education, or family business management module in a graduate-level course on family business. It can be taught in a 90-minute session early in a family business course to showcase how to educate the next generation members from their childhood. It can also be used together with part B of the case (see Ivey product 9B19C002) in a two-part, 180-minute session to ensure a comprehensive understanding of family succession, including its process, and the succession of management rights and family wealth. After completion of this case, students will be able to
- understand how to nurture the next generation members to become promising leaders and successors in family businesses;
- discuss the role of family education and family relationships in the succession process; and
- solve the conflicts arising from the different values held by two different generations in family businesses.
China, Large, 2010
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