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BUSINESS FAMILIES FOUNDATION

ACTIVITY REPORT
2014

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Introduction........................................................................................ 2
A Message from our President......................................................... 3
Measurable Achievements from 2014............................................ 4
Timeline at a Glance for 2014.......................................................... 5
2014 Activities..................................................................................... 6
Business Development & Relationships..................................... 7
Content Production........................................................................ 8
Marketing, Communications & Events........................................ 10
Technology...................................................................................... 12
Operations....................................................................................... 13
Board of Directors and Advisors ..................................................... 14

1

INTRODUCTION
Business Families Foundation is proud to produce our year-end activity report.
With a refreshed and refocused team in place and stronger partnerships than ever before, we are
well on our way to conquering our goals in achieving greater visibility and user access than ever
before.
In the pages to follow, you will find a summary of activities that took place throughout the 2014
calendar year sorted by business division. Additionally, measurable achievements and objectives as
well as a timeline overview are detailed to help quantify and qualify key activities.
We are excited to continue moving forward on this journey together and are thrilled to have your
support along the way.
The activity report is divided into 5 segments:

MARKETING,
COMMUNICATIONS
& EVENTS

BUSINESS
DEVELOPMENT
& RELATIONSHIPS
CONTENT
PRODUCTION

OPERATIONS

TECHNOLOGY

2

A MESSAGE FROM OUR PRESIDENT

In 2014 our Foundation has made significant strides. It refocused its energy and activities
in order to better serve its core constituents: Entrepreneurial Families. For them we
have produced relevant, thought-provoking online material that is interactive, enjoyable
and acts as a guide in overcoming the unique and particular challenges faced by
entrepreneurial families.
This year, we have engaged the rising generation through
ambitious social media activity and through the first of many
regroupings of 20 and 30 something’s that continue to inspire
our work. In light of our more “inclusive” strategy, we have
increased partnerships with like-minded organizations, allowing
us to better spread our quality material in blended learning
and classroom formats. We have built a professional team and
continue to work with a network of experts to develop practical
and relevant content.
Looking ahead to 2015, the Foundation will concentrate on
its outreach. We will be developing new innovative content
in English, Spanish and French and engaging in strategic
partnerships with key global organizations that carry a similar
vision and values.
The foundation will also focus on unveiling the key roles the women and the rising
generation play in the sustainability of Entrepreneurial families and build the foundation
for long lasting initiatives that highlight and support these sub-markets.
Above and beyond all these activities and projects, we will also be celebrating the
foundation’s 25th anniversary and will bring together leading families and industry
thought leaders to reflect upon the role our cherished Entrepreneurial family business
model will play in the year 2040.
These are some exiting times ahead…

Olivier de Richoufftz

3

MEASURABLE ACHIEVEMENTS FROM 2014
2014 was indeed an exciting and eventful year, below are some of our measurable and
quantitative achievements.

....................................................................................................................................................................................................
Business Development
Sponsors

RBC1

CAF

New Distributors




New Educational Licenses

RBC

5

CAFE, Canada
FBCE, Australia
Parampara, India
Tharawat, Middle East
Trusted Family, Global

5

Alberta Business Family Institute
HEC Montreal
Business Families Centre of the Sauder School of Business
Goering Center
Technológico de Monterrey

....................................................................................................................................................................................................
Content Production
Interviews
Videos

19

Online Educational Modules

Interv
90+

Communication module
Compass for Entrepreneurial Families

7

Are you on a path your parents chose?
When no one else understands what you are going through
A Balancing Act
The weight of Responsibility
Presenting Ownership Mechanisms
Women’s Leaders in the shadows
When the line between business and person isn’t so clear

4

Le cœur balance
L’éternel incompris
Pas de pression
Une géante invisible

Short video clips in French

W

Interview based thought provoking videos

3
5

Short video clips in English

Families & Experts

....................................................................................................................................................................................................
Marketing, Communications & Events

Social Media Reach

New Subscribers

Newsletter Readers

Academy

Women’s Think Tank

Next Generation Gatherings

10,000
700
8,000
60
15
2 X 40

80,000 Shares
Freemium & Premium Subscriptions
English, French and Spanish readership
Participants regrouped over 3 days
Women gathered over a 2 day period
Networking / workshop events

4

TIMELINE AT A GLANCE FOR 2014

Women’s Think Tank
Montreal
Academy
Social Media
Activation

Filming & Editing
of Promotional
Videos

FEB

MAR

APR

BFF Welcomes a
New President

Digital Team
Launches New
eLearning Platform

5

MAY

JUNE

Change of
Accounting &
Finance Service
Providers

Completion of
Compass for
Entrepreneurial
Families

New License
Agreements

BFF Moves to
999 Boul. de
Maisonneuve. O

JAN

Second Next
Generation
Event

JULY

AUG

New Website
Launch
BFF Adds
an Executive
Assistant to the Team
as well as a
Web Developer

SEPT

First Next
Generation
Event

OCT

NOV

DEC

Competition of
Communication
& Conflict
Management

Training Resources
for Academy
Developed
BFF Adds a
Digital Artist
to the Team

2014 ACTIVITIES

6

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT & RELATIONSHIPS

Our Partners

New License Conditions

Central to developing qualified traffic
to the BFF website and helping reach
our target market, our partners play
a crucial role for the foundation both
now and moving forward.

In June 2014, current partners were
made aware of the new license
conditions.
These
conditions
bundled an annual fee with the
participation in a compulsory
training, introducing new material
and facilitation skills to participants.

Our partners get involved with the
foundation in one or many ways
including; content commissioning,
licensing agreements or through
obtaining wide-spread access for
members of their organizations to
BFF education.
Following the FBN Asia Academy
2013 in Singapore, our Asian Partner
has developed activities with the
following Centres providing them
with our educational material:
Universitas Kristen Petra from
Indonesia, Taylors Education Group
from Malaysia, National University
of Singapore (NUS Business School)
from Singapore, The Chinese
University of Hong Kong (CUHK).

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New Partnerships
2014 was an exciting year as new
relationships were developed and
visibility of the BFF brand was
increased. Partnerships developed
were based on mass opening of
dashboard access to members of
the partnering organization, content
commissioning and development, or
opportunities for network synergies
and visibility.
Ongoing Partnerships
A wide range of partners continue
to collaborate with BFF in the
distribution and use of online
education in their own events,
through blended learning and by
giving their members access to our
content through the general portal
or a custom dashboard.

CONTENT PRODUCTION

Courses
Continuing to populate the BFF
learning portal, brand new courses
were developed over the course of
2014.
Communication and Conflict
Management for Business
Families
This course, comprised of three
distinct
modules,
addresses
the issues of how to clearly
communicate a message, improve
interpersonal communication skills
and manage conflict when it occurs.
Featuring original case stories and
commentary from experts on the
matter, this course totals one hour
of powerful, relatable and easy to
digest material on a vital topic.
Compass for Entrepreneurial
Families
Providing a better understanding
of fundamental and contemporary
family business concepts, this course
was developed for all members
of the entrepreneurial family
irrespective of their generation,
ownership or governance in place.
The 5 units are; Balancing Family and
Business, Understanding Life Cycles,
Navigating Ownership, DecisionMaking Processes and Planning
Ahead. With its own video and
animated case stories, interactive
activities, expert commentary and
peer perspectives, this course lays
the foundation for a new era of
learning online.

Navigating Ownership for RBC
Professionals
In light of BFF’s recent partnership
with RBC, not only was the third
unit of Compass for Entrepreneurial
Families commissioned by the
financial institution, but there was
also an exclusive version developed
specifically for the use of RBC
professionals. This unit featured
special commentary from the
institutions management teams,
peers and experts working with
extensive experience working with
enterprising families.
Video Tutorials
Innovating the standard use of
BFF videos, eight tutorials have
been developed. These are onehour activities that guide the user’s
reflection and explain how to use
the video to engage in conversation
with a business family member
based on several key topics.

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CONTENT PRODUCTION

Training Resources

Interviews

In order to support partners in the
understanding and facilitation of BFF
material, certain training resources
were developed and distributed at
our Montreal Academy.

Additional
interviews
were
conducted with family business
members and experts alike to fuel
content and generate new releases
for the user dashboard, moving
forward.

Compass Guide
Following the course progression,
this training resource provides
leading questions for facilitators
and links other pertinent BFF
content, which may enrich the
learning experience provided by any
facilitator. The guide is a staple that
can be used at any training event for
the compass course or as a support
tool for partners.
Facilitation at a Glance
To support the development of
general facilitation skills, an existing
guide was personalized with the
BFF brand and distributed to our
partners as an additional tool to
support their blended learning
programs.
Video Production
In support of different content
developed over the course of the
year as well as several promotional
initiatives, a large variety of video
editing took place throughout the
calendar year. The recording and
paced release of over 90 videos
was achieved with the support of
participants from around the world;
Australia, Canada, India, Mexico,
Colombia, Italy, Finland, Malaysia,
France and Asia.

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Compilation Videos
To better speak to each unique visitor
that comes to our website, dozens
of themed compilation videos were
created to provide a sneak peak into
what the foundation’s material has
to offer.
Promotional Content
Short, relevant and attention
grabbing clips were scripted and
filmed to highlight 6 different
commonly seen challenges among
entrepreneurial families. These
videos were used to fuel news
releases, home page engagement
and instigate conversation among
our market.

MARKETING, COMMUNICATIONS & EVENTS

New Website

Advertising

In June of 2014, Business Families
Foundation launched a reorganized
and redesigned website. The new
user experience was designed with
a more family focused target in
mind. The concept is clean, more
spacious and customizable in a way
meant to tailor the experience for
each unique user.

With a refocused position and new
products to offer, BFF has started to
develop advertising images that can
be placed when met with impromptu
advertising opportunities. Examples
include recent placement in Family
Business Magazine and preparation
for future remarketing campaigns.

Social Media Activation

Key messages and information from
the new website and positioning was
transferred into marketing collateral
for
relationship
development
purposes. Material such as sales kits,
brochures and personal narratives
are now readily available for the
team to leverage.

Once the new website was
launched, the foundation began
activating its social media platforms
including; Facebook, Twitter and
Linkedin. A variety of different
content is shared on a daily basis
including infographics, articles and
relevant news about families and
business. Posts will either lead to
complimentary external resources
in the field of family business, or
onto the BFF website through its
blog or direct links.

Communication Collateral

Newsletter
Applying
best
practices
and
simplifying the look and feel, our
monthly newsletter continues to
reach over 8,000 readers with new
content and release information
in the first week of every month.
Content has shifted to ensure
optimal open rates, click through
rates and lasting engagement.

10

MARKETING, COMMUNICATIONS & EVENTS

Women’s Think Tank

Events
In the fall of 2014, a series of events
brought together much of the hard
work, new content and stronger
communication developed by the
foundation throughout the course
of the year. These all provided
moments to solidify our credibility
as the most relevant online resource
for entrepreneurial families and
support our partners and users in
their learning journey.
Academy
From October 22-24, 2014, BFF
welcomed 45 participants from
around the world to the W Hotel
in Montreal for another BFF
Academy. Two different programs
ran in parallel and welcomed
internationally renown speakers
to address topics such as The
Evolution
of Women’s Roles in
Family Business, Ownership, The
Next Generation, Facilitation in
Family Business and more.

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Following the Montreal Academy, 15
women from across the globe with
varied roles in their entrepreneurial
families gathered together for a
two-day Think Tank to voice some of
the most prevalent issues they and
other women they know face in the
business and family environments.
This event behaved as the first
stepping-stone in developing a
framework for the Women in
Entreprising Families Initiative which
is planned to launch formally in
2015.
Next Generation Events
In 2014, the first two Next Generation
events were held with a group of 40
Next Generation Family members
in their early to late 20’s. This group
was brought together by two Next
Gen Ambassadors to connect with
each other, speak openly about the
dilemmas they face and experience
a hands-on, interactive exercise on
ownership vs. management. As this
group continues to grow, BFF will
support the organization of other
sessions of interest to gain more
insight on this important target of
future leaders.

TECHNOLOGY

eLearning Platform

New Dashboard

For over a year, the IT team worked
on developing an eLearning
framework that would allow BFF to
develop educational content using
virtually any technology available
and successfully track the progress
of users. This platform also
allows partners to obtain critical
information about their member’s
interaction with BFF content,
strengthening our relationships and
help our team learn from current
users.

In order to improve the user
learning experience once they have
gained access to all of BFF’s content,
a new learning dashboard has been
developed in a model inspired by
the popular Netflix layout. This
allows users to browse by category
or theme of interest and keep track
of what they have already viewed or
shared.

Administrative Tools
Several tools have been generated
in order to make the internal
workings of the foundation more
efficient and productive. Examples
include tools that can autogenerate required certificated for
completed courses, the ability to
provide and revoke specific access
from individual users and the ability
to publish new videos and adjust
certain content on the web without
support from the tech team.

Course Technology
Applications have been developed
in order to allow BFF to extract
specific models or activities from a
full-length course in order to let a
user have stand-alone experiences.
This increases the flexibility of using
material in events, presentations
and sharing online.
Software & Programs
Additional
tools
used
to
optimize workflow and provide
more accurate and analytical
information
for
improvement
purposes are now being leveraged.
Tools include; Trello for project
management, Hootsuite for social
media, Mailchimp for database
management, Google Analytics and
Dash-this for statistics and more.

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OPERATIONS
New Staff

Accounting & Finance

We have identified where additional
skilled resources were necessary
and where we could outsource to
external providers who are experts in
their field. As a result we have added
a position in business development,
an executive assistant, a research
assistant, a marketing coordinator
and a designer/animator to the
team. The result of many of these
additions will result in significantly
less investment made on external
suppliers unless engaged for a
specific, short-term project.

At the end of the calendar year,
Business
Families
Foundation
switched over to a new third-party
provider who was responsible for
shift the accounting towards an
activity based costing model and
simplifying the revenue stream
model.

Olivier de Richoufftz

Francois Viens

Carmen de la Torre

Lyne Fontaine

Mark Fenwick

Franck Methis

President

Executive Assistant

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Partnerships & Strategic
Development

Technology

Admin & Finance

Technology

Administration
In January of 2014, BFF moved its
office to a larger and more versatile
space. This layout not only has cost
benefits to the organization, but
also allows for a more dynamic
work environment. In December
of 2014 certain renovations were
put in place to adapt to a smaller
move in the same location and the
accomodation of new tenants on
the floor.

Renée Pellissier

Joelle Gourdji

Content Development

Marketing & Communications

Stephanie Laurin

Edouard Duplessis

Thomas Clark

James Barrett

Marketing & Communications

Content Development

Technology

Digital Artist

BOARD OF DIRECTORS AND ADVISORS

Meet the board of directors

Philippe de Gaspé
Beaubien
Co-Founder, Business
Families Foundation

Nan-b de Gaspé
Beaubien

Ronald
Mannix

Co-Founder, Business
Families Foundation

Tinah
Tanoto

Philippe de Gaspé
Beaubien III

MargaretJean Mannix

Paulina Garza

Meet the advisors to the board

Arturo
Torres

Sajen
Aswani

Patricia
Annino

John A.
Davis

Mitch
Garber

Nadir
Mohamed

Patricio Lopez
del Puerto

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Business Families Foundation is graciously supported by the

Fondation

de Gaspé Beaubien
Foundation

and by the consistent and passionate commitment of the many
experts,
families and faculty in the field of family business