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Van Zeeland Manufacturing

Transitioning the family business

Robin Van Zeeland had run the family’s manufacturing business since 1980. He needed help planning a business transition that was fair to his children, could support his retirement and keep the business financially stable.

The Challenge

Because two of his children worked in the business and one did not, how to make the transition fair to all three — while keeping the business primed for future success — was one of the biggest questions that needed answering. How Robin could set himself up for retirement was another.

The Solution

Wipfli performed a business valuation to determine the company’s worth. Then, the team created projections and options so Robin could plan a fair and tax-advantaged transition. Because Van Zeeland Manufacturing had zero debt, he was able to take cash out of the business and invest it. That diversified his assets and lowered the company value, making the transition to his children more tax efficient. Robin gifted a portion of the business to his children and sold them the remainder.

The way Wipfli structured and balanced everything prevented potential issues in the business and family alike.
Robin Van Zeeland, President and Owner at Van Zeeland Manufacturing

The results

With Wipfli’s help, Robin found a solution that benefitted each of his children equally and ensured the company could handle the buyout. Since his retirement and the company’s future is secured, Robin has been able to shift management decisions to his children, who are now leaders and part owners in the business. Robin transitioned the family business to the next generation without conflict and gained peace of mind.