After the takeover of your company, everything initially remains largely unchanged: Most of the time, our investments are quite successful before the acquisition - and that's why we like to watch the team on site for a few months and get to know the business better. Gradually, opportunities then arise to provide our own input. After 1 - 2 years, the following 3 areas in particular have changed as a result of our involvement and succession planning:
Our cooperation is based primarily on the following four building blocks:
Companies in the FORUM investment group do a few things differently: They are more goal-oriented, measure themselves more against the competition, spend much more time on personnel marketing and development, and have well-structured sales processes. We have documented these and a whole range of other principles in a handbook for our managers. It contains suggestions for further training that can be used to explore topics of interest in greater depth.
We meet with the managing directors of our portfolio companies 1x p.a. for a two-day conference to discuss and deepen the principles of good corporate governance. Now that the Software Group has grown to 12 shareholdings, it is also a good opportunity to exchange experiences with the principles in this sector. These conferences are supplemented by webinars in which individual companies or FORUM present a contribution to best practice, duration 1 - 1 1/2 h.
In the review meetings, our managing director Burkhard Wittek meets 3 - 4x p.a. with each participation to discuss company-specific topics. The agenda is set together at least two weeks in advance, so that the facts and figures for the upcoming decisions can be well prepared and made available in advance. Only topics of medium and long-term importance, e.g. personnel development or major projects, are included on the agenda. We are happy to invite other managers to the review meetings. Depending on the quality of the preparation (and the discussion culture in the company) they last 3 - 7h.
Senior Advisors are former entrepreneurs or CEOs who have retired from their companies but still want to pass on their experience to younger colleagues. A Senior Advisor looks after 1 - 2 FORUM investments. They spend 4 - 10 days per year with the family businesses.
The division of roles is clear: responsibility remains undivided with the company, the Senior Advisor must take a back seat in the role of coach or sparring partner. We do not want "middle management" under any circumstances.
"With the transfer of our companies to FORUM Family Office, we are combining a step that ensures the continuity and reliability of the GEDAT Group, as our proven corporate philosophy will be continued by FORUM. At the same time, FORUM sets the course for healthy growth and technologically innovative progress."