Our principles - long-term, decentralised and entrepreneurial - are the compass for the decisions we make every day, the priorities we set and the people we surround ourselves with. FORUM's employees follow these principles, and the employees in our shareholdings integrate them into the DNA of their own companies.
As a family office, we have a capital base that is permanent: we don't have to turn over assets, we don't have maturities - our mandate is to grow the family's capital base in perpetuity while avoiding risk.
That is why we assume that every investment will be held permanently. In family equity, our holding period is de facto permanent - the last sale was in 1999. In equities, we part with investments somewhat more easily because the company is not affected.
Because we hold our investments for the long term, we support all plans to strengthen the companies in the long term. That is why we train and invest in innovations.
We are convinced that decentralised leadership with delegation of responsibility is the best way to keep companies agile: it creates motivated employees, and they are the most important asset - even if it doesn't show up on the balance sheet!
Decentralisation is most successful when combined with a leadership culture that gives employees clear expectations of their roles and goals.
The first two principles are rather preserving - the third principle "entrepreneurial" - describes our concern that our companies belong to the best in their industry. If necessary, we bring a lot of experience in "best practice" from many sectors to this. We expect our investments to grow at least 5 percentage points faster than the market and thus gain market share - this is an objective way for our clients to confirm that we are well positioned.
"We deliberately chose FORUM as HSH's strategic partner because this is the best way for us to guarantee important principles such as reliability, longevity and also our own identity as a medium-sized company and carry them into the future. Reliability and a long-term approach were significant features of our discussions with Dr Wittek"