Why Do Family Businesses Succeed In Difficult Times?

Despite the current economic uncertainty and the accelerating pace of change, South Africa’s family business sector has high ambitions for quick and aggressive growth over the next five years. At a time when other businesses are struggling to create revenue, around 78% of South African family businesses reported growth in the last 12 months, and 62% are expecting to grow steadily over the next five years.

So what is it that makes family business so resilient and successful in difficult times ?
According to Entrepreneur Magazine there are 4 forces that drive this success:

1. Family Unity

Unified families have a much easier time adapting to change and typically put family and business interests ahead of their own self interests.

2. More Than Just Money

Successful families are committed to a set of values beyond just financial gain.
Establishing a core set of values gives family members a sense of purpose and the opportunity to commit to something greater than themselves.

3. A Unified Vision

Successful families

• Align strategy with the values and vision of family ownership
• Strategically plan for the business on a regular basis
• Build an independent board to provide accountability

4. Preparing The Next Generation

Investing in the next generation is a must. Successful multigenerational families invest in the next generations by:

• Helping them match skill/passion to work (regardless of whether or not that work is in- or outside the business)
• Preparing them to be responsible owners
• Holding those working for the business accountable for their performance
• Educating them about the challenges of leadership

Below I have attached a survey done by the PWC on family business in South Africa and abroad which will give you greater insight into the dynamics and challenges faced by family businesses.


Apex Cordset Technologies Pty (Ltd) is a family business that was founded in 1986 and employs over 700 people. We believe that our stakeholders are all part of our extended family which has been the cornerstone of our survival and success over the years. Thank you for being a part of our family.

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