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Our eighth annual European Family Business Barometer, a joint report between KPMG Enterprise and European Family Businesses (EFB), features responses from more than 1,600 owners, next generation and senior leaders of family businesses across Europe and the UK​.

The report shares the perspectives of family businesses on a range of key matters, from overall business confidence and business priorities to succession and beyond. This year’s findings indicate that confident family businesses are prioritising innovation, training and education, and diversification, with an increased focus on succession as they look to the future.

Key report findings​

The survey unearthed that family businesses are taking action to respond to an uncertain and changing world. 96 percent of UK family businesses surveyed cited fostering innovation as the most pressing priority for the next two years, followed closely by educating and training their workforce (94 percent) and diversification of products and services (83 percent). ​

Sustainability is taking on greater importance for many family businesses as well. The survey findings suggest that family businesses are determined to stay highly relevant and intensely competitive on the world stage, adapting and thriving in​ a fast-changing world. This change is being driven by the next generation family members, who are determined to ensure their companies perform well on environmental issues and corporate social responsibility.​

Over the next five to 10 years, the world will experience an unprecedented transfer of wealth between generations as the senior generation hands over control of the family business and other assets to the next generation. It's clear that for many respondents, succession is front of mind. 34 percent of UK family businesses surveyed have said they intend to pass ownership of the business to the next generation, while 31 percent are planning to pass the management down the line. ​

And as the uncertainty of Brexit continues, 69 percent of UK family businesses surveyed see geopolitical, trade and economic uncertainty as a high area of concern, compared to 51 percent of respondents across Europe, who continue to remain fairly confident about the future.​

For a full analysis of the results and trends identified by more than 1,600 family business owners, download the report below.