The second annual Resnick-Wynn Family Business Conference, held in partnership with Florida Gulf Coast University, will feature former Hasbro Chairman and CEO Alan Hassenfeld as keynote speaker.
The March 3 conference, which begins at 12:30 p.m. and is titled “Family Business: Driving Success through Succession,” is open to multigenerational family business owners and focuses on best practices to prepare the next generation of leaders for a successful transition. Additional topics include the successful integration of outside directors and advisory boards for governance and growth, as well as estate planning.
The Family Business Conference was founded in 2022 by Billie Resnick, Michael Wynn and John Resnick. Last year’s event, headlined by media mogul Steve Forbes, drew a sold-out crowd of 250.
“Family businesses become more complex once they move past the founder’s generation,” said John Resnick, principal of The Resnick Group. “Our conference offers a private forum for family firms to meet, collaborate and share innovative strategies to sustain their success.”
“Succession is not an event; it is a process,” added Billie Resnick, principal of The Resnick Group. “When executed properly, it elevates the older generation while recognizing talents of the younger generations, leaving the business stronger and in a better position for growth.”
Ninety percent of all American businesses are family owned, yet only one-third survive to the second generation. To help improve those odds in Southwest Florida, the conference features a mix of local and national business leaders who have successfully navigated generational transitions.
“Running a family-owned business presents a unique set of demands and responsibilities,” said fourth generation leader Michael Wynn, president of Sunshine Ace Hardware. “Balancing family politics in a rapidly changing business environment requires a combination of emotional intelligence and innovative entrepreneurialism. We want to provide the knowledge to help strengthen the number of family businesses that can successfully prepare their organization to transition from one generation to the next.”
Hassenfeld, a 1996 inductee into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame, began working at Hasbro in 1970, serving in a variety of sales and marketing roles before being named president in 1984. He became board chairman and CEO in 1989. After retiring as CEO in 2003, Hassenfeld remained as board chairman, and in 2006, became the non-employee board chairman while heading the company’s philanthropic and social responsibility endeavors.
Celebrating 100 years in 2023, Hasbro is a global branded entertainment leader with a mission to entertain and connect generations of fans through the wonder of storytelling and exhilaration of play. Hasbro’s portfolio of brands includes Monopoly, G.I. Joe, Nerf, Play-Doh, Power Rangers, Potato Head, Transformers and hundreds of additional products and toys, including Marvel and Star Wars. Today, Hasbro exceeds $6 billion in annual revenue.
“There is not one magic formula for a family business, as no family business is the same,” Hassenfeld said. “This Family Business Conference gives us the chance to share with one another our trials and tribulations, our successes and our mistakes.”
Joining Hassenfeld as a featured speaker will be Blake Gable, CEO of Barron Collier Companies, which is dedicated to the responsible development, management and stewardship of numerous landholdings.
Single tickets are available for $250, with discounts available for corporate tables of six, and require pre-registration by visiting FGCU.edu/FamilyBusinessConference. Group rates also are available. Proceeds from the event will support a scholarship fund for business and entrepreneurship majors at FGCU who plan to launch or lead a family business.
About the Resnick-Wynn Family Business Conference
The Resnick-Wynn Family Business Conference, in partnership with Florida Gulf Coast University, was created in 2022 by Billie Resnick, Michael Wynn and John Resnick to support the success and survival of family businesses in Southwest Florida. The Resnicks are principals of The Resnick Group, a firm that provides estate planning and life insurance guidance to affluent family business owners throughout numerous states, and Wynn is a fourth-generation leader and president of Sunshine Ace Hardware, a Naples-based company founded in 1958. For more information, please visit FGCU.edu/FamilyBusinessConference.