46th Annual Society for Case Research & Global Jesuit Case Series Summer Workshop 2024

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Intended Audience: 
Connie Allsopp

The Sole Beneficiary of a Family Business Asked, "What Is My Life Worth?"

This decisional case illustrates how Sara Smith, decided as a sole beneficiary to run the thirty-five-year-old family business while she decided what was her best course of action. She had suddenly become the sole owner of Westcoast Composite Products (WCP) after her husband’s sudden passing, and her first impulse was to close everything down. However, Sara soon discovered that the real issue was how to realize any profits. The company exit planning had not been done and this required strategic thinking. Students are asked to consider what were the key constraints (Lepore & Cohen, 1999) to immediately selling or closing the company. They are also invited to explore options for Sara to realize profits and package the thirty-five-year family business for a profitable sale.