The Chinese Family Business Young Generation Report Released in Beijing

Promoting the Succession of Excellent Entrepreneurship over Generations

On 4 December, the Chinese Family Business Young Generation Report (“Report”) was released in Beijing, providing a lens to understand the ideas and status of this unique group. The Report was completed through collaboration between a number of research institutes, including the Research Office of All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce (ACFIC), the Family Enterprise Committee of the China Private Economy Research Association, and the Lee Kum Kee Family.

The Report covers young entrepreneurs who have completed or entered the succession process; those who have not inherited but are being cultivated to do so; and those who have started their own business instead of entering their family enterprises. The Report seeks to present the younger generation of family enterprises in a truthful, objective and comprehensive way.

“Currently family enterprises accounts for 80% of private enterprises in China and most entrepreneurs, who started their business at the beginning of China’ reform and opening-up are in their elderly age,” said Mr. Zhuang Congsheng, former Vice-Chairman of ACFIC and Chairman of the China Private Economy Research Association. “Whether the younger generation can smoothly succeed will largely determine the future of Chinese family enterprises, and will certainly have an important influence on the sustained and healthy development of China’s economy over the long term.”

The Family Enterprise Committee of the China Private Economy Research Association has released a series of reports on Chinese family businesses, with a focus on “development”, “corporate social responsibility” and “succession” in 2011, 2013 and 2015 respectively. This Report focuses on the high-profile “younger generation” of entrepreneurs, and aims to help them explore and evaluate innovative practices and successful experiences from a perspective that combines the theoretical with the practical, thus promoting the smooth succession and sustainable development of Chinese family enterprises.

The Report contains three chapters. Chapter I is comprised of one national report and seven sub-reports on situations in Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Shandong, Hubei, Guangdong, and Sichuan. Chapter II consists of representative case studies on 34 entrepreneurs from the younger generation. Focusing on the main topic of succession processes for enterprises and the related culture, it describes how they chose either to inherit or to start their own business as well as their psychological journey at that time. Chapter III is a brief introduction to 108 organizations of younger entrepreneurs nationwide.

“Youth is ‘new’ and ‘alive’”, said Sammy Lee, a member of the fourth generation of the Lee Kum Kee Family and Chairman of LKK Health Products Group. “‘Constant Entrepreneurship’ is ingrained in the Lee Kum Kee Family psyche. In terms of governance, we set up a family committee on the basis of ‘preventative treatment of diseases’, which takes preventive measures, and looks ahead to the long-term development of the family and its enterprises. We expect the Lee Kum Kee Family stories as well as other case studies in the Report to resonate with more people, and to inspire the younger generation to forge ahead, especially when it comes to innovation and ambition.”

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