Planning your company succession in good time Succession planning

Comprehensive succession planning from Consulta
Free access to Succession-Navigator®
CHF 1,000 discount on succession packages for AXA customers

Do you want your company to continue to thrive after your retirement? If so, it's worth thinking about succession planning in good time. You can thus ensure the continuation of your business after your departure and invest in a carefree retirement.

What is succession planning?

Do you as a business owner want to retire while ensuring the continuation of your company? Then you need a successor. Succession planning allows you to decide who will run your SME after your departure, and the terms on which the business is handed on. A variety of succession options are possible – from passing your family business on to the next generation to choosing longstanding employees to succeed you.

What types of succession planning are there?

There is no one-size-fits-all succession planning solution that suits all businesses equally: The right succession planning is optimally tailored to the individual circumstances of your company. The following types of company succession are the most frequent in Switzerland: 

  • Management buy out (MBO): internal takeover of the company by member(s) of its own management team
  • Management buy-in (MBI): takeover of the company by an external successor
  • Family buy-out (FBO): takeover of the company by a family member ("next generation")
  • Sale to an investor 
  • Transfer to a foundation
  • Full/partial acquisition by a financial investor 
  • Sale to another company
  • Merger with another company

Why is succession planning so important?

Handing on your life's work presents considerable challenges for everyone involved. Numerous factors need to be taken into account when managing a company succession. Consideration has to be given not only to looking for a suitable successor, but also to separating out personal and business assets, with due regard to tax and legal matters.

Failure to consider these factors may result in the loss of jobs and expertise and in excess tax payments – jeopardizing the survival of your business. Planning your succession in good time will consequently help ensure that your company continues to thrive after you retire. 

AXA and Consulta – your partners in succession planning

AXA, in collaboration with Consulta, helps you find your optimal successor. We provide comprehensive advice and valuable tips on planning your company succession effectively. Our succession seminars show you how to hand over your company smoothly, as well as presenting your options as regards pension planning. You will thus not only be investing in a successful future for your business, but also paving the way for a carefree new chapter in your life.

Succession planning with Consulta

Our partner company, the business and management consultancy Consulta AG, specializes in succession planning for SMEs and has already advised over 400 business owners. This boutique consulting firm with over 25 specialists offers a full range of succession planning services for companies. It has developed a cutting-edge tool called the Succession-Navigator® to steer Swiss SMEs safely through the succession planning process.

Succession seminars

Consulta assists the managing directors of SMEs  by offering seminars, each lasting several hours, on effective succession planning. Participants receive training on the company succession process and unresolved issues are clarified. The aim is to enable the participants to plan their own company succession after the seminar.

Once you have registered at (in German), you will also be able to view the succession seminar video online. 

Register for the seminar (in German)

Succession advice

As an exclusive partner of AXA, Consulta helps you work out the right succession plan for your company. This is based on the Succession-Navigator® tool developed in-house. Whether you want to find a successor internally or externally, or are considering an external sale of your company, Consulta's experienced business advisors will assist you in developing your individual succession solution.  

To  succession advice (in German)


Have you thought of everything? Consulta’s Succession-Navigator® divides succession planning into 12 relevant areas. From tax and valuing your company through to insurance, it takes a close look at all the components of a successful company handover. 

To Succession-Navigator® (in German)


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Support and frequently asked questions

  • When should companies start planning for succession?

    It pays off to plan your company succession in good time. People often underestimate how much time and energy it takes to find the best solution for the future. Early, long-term planning is the only way to give yourself the necessary scope to identify and implement the optimal succession solution. You should allow at least three to five years in order to hand over a company under optimal conditions. This will enable you to ensure the survival of your business and secure your employees' jobs. 

    At the same time, it lets you – the seller – plan ahead for retirement and safeguard your financial security. This structured approach is of major benefit not only in the normal course of events, but also when an unforeseen situation arises – such as illness or accident.

  • Is succession planning a good idea for other people as well as business owners?

    The general aim of succession planning is to fill key positions when someone leaves. Succession planning is therefore useful at other times, and not just when a company changes hands. It is also a proven means of supporting talent management and employee development, since it ensures that posts are filled (internally) as efficiently as possible when they become vacant. 

  • I'd like to sell my company when I retire. What do I need to bear in mind when planning my succession?

    It's also worth investing in appropriate succession planning at an early stage if a company is expected to be sold. At the end of the day, your company is being handed over to an external party that is not yet familiar with your internal processes and how your business works. It is therefore all the more important to prepare for the handover as thoroughly as possible. Our blog post "A step-by-step guide to planning your company succession" sums up how you can ensure that your company retains its expertise and other success factors after it has been sold.

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