January 2018 Print

A Note From the Executive Director



As we begin another year, I’m always inspired by reflecting on what FBN has accomplished and look forward to what lies ahead.  Here’s a brief recap:

  • What we accomplished at the board level is amazing!  We brought on three new, enthused board members, updated our by-laws, held our first annual meeting, and launched a committee structure to take us to the next level.  We are looking for members at large to join us.  If you are interested in a leadership experience within FBN or know someone who might be, contact me.We gained 14 new members this year!  This is a record for our chapter and sets the bar for 2018. Our members make us a vibrant learning community and we are excited for others to join us in 2018.

  • We successfully launched a new event – The Family Hosted Visit - and received rave reviews.  One member said, “Really liked the small group size.  Liked being able to adjust the agenda to be responsive to the needs of the group. This was well done!”  A sincere thank you to the Duchossois family and the Follett family for hosting these intimate learning experiences in 2017.  If you are interested in hosting in 2019, please let me know.

  • Our regional Family Forums continue to exceed expectations!  We were in La Jolla, California, in the spring and in Times Square, New York, in the fall.  Take a moment to view our 2018 event schedule.

  • Save the dates now and register for La Jolla!

  • We are committed to bringing you the latest research and tools on different aspects of family business.  This year, we were honored to be the first to share the results and insights from the 2017 Edelman Trust Barometer. I urge you to read the cliff notes and view the full presentation.  Feel free to share it within your family and your business.

  • We revealed a robust International Internship program for NxGs.  Check out this impressive list! Although not required,  many times the host family will provide one or more of the following: housing, wages and time spent learning the family’s governance. If you have an internship program you would like to offer to the FBN community or if you are interested in applying for one, please contact me. I would be thrilled to work with you to make it a great experience!

  • 2018 is deemed “The Year of the NxG”!  We are excited to participate in an FBN global relay where each chapter hosts a NxG event to learn and celebrate the ties that bind us together as one BIG, global, NxG family business community.  See what’s happening in La Jolla!


As always, I am delighted to serve as the Executive Director of FBN. I welcome your thoughts and feedback.  Please feel free to contact me at 630-936-3096 or email me at jmuntz@fbn-na.org.

It’s going to be a great year!

Jennifer Muntz
Executive Director

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Family Business

A Unique Experience of International, Enterprising Families.
FBN held the 28th World Summit in Gran Canaria  , Spain in November of 2017. It was a truly amazing experience to see almost 500 family members from across the globe come together to learn, network and share their experiences. We explored and celebrated The Positive Impact of Family Business: Responsibility, Resilience and Regeneration. There was a buzz in the air as families shared how they are utilizing their business, profits and other resources to make the world a better place - creating a purposeful business and a sustainable future. Many sessions showcased how family businesses are responsible stewards in the areas of the environment, people, communities and future generations.

My experience began in Barcelona as part of an intimate group on a Learning Journey. An FBN Learning Journey is a 2-day experience, touring local family businesses, foundations, areas of interest and cultural hot spots. We toured family owned Cobega, a Coca-Cola bottling and filing company. We visited Codorniu and the family estate. Codorniu is an 18-generation family owned winery and we learned about wine making, toured the cellars by train, enjoyed a Cava tasting and the family hosted dinner in their home. On the last day, we toured a Mango apparel distribution center and visited the headquarters. We toured Puig, a fashion and fragrance company and viewed their fragrance lab and learned about the process. Every business we visited was family owned and we were fortunate enough to meet family members at each location, in a private setting. We learned about their history, the products, their family, governance and had amazing conversations! For the cultural visit, we toured the Gothic and old town of Barcelona which was enlightening and a beautiful way to learn about the history of Barcelona.

FBN’s NxG Entrepreneurship Award + Advice From Finalists
Each year there are 3 finalists who get the opportunity to tell their story at the FBN World Summit.

  • EduEMPLEA (co-founded by Ricardo Pineda Vila) increases productivity/competitiveness through tailor-made vocational training that intentionally integrates teachers, students and companies.
  • OneMind Dogs (co-founded by Noora Keskievari) offers a dog training method that is easy, efficient and fun. It is a scalable business because dog owners learn online and are supported by a coach network.
  • Janec Pelagic Plant (run by Bruno Leone Jimenez) boosts the efficiency of processing pelagic fish such as sardines. Initially a project of the family business that went bankrupt in 2015, the pelagic plant has been re-designed for added-value products such as HGT (fish with no head, no guts and no tail).

CONGRATULATIONS to Ricardo Pineda Vila, whose business was praised for its scope of operations. In 26-months the company has trained over 10,000 students from over 60 companies and achieved a 90% project repurchase rate. It is planning to expand from Colombia/Ecuador to the rest of Latin America.

Advice for Other Entrepreneurs and Intrapreneurs

  • Develop the trait of curiosity
  • Read a book every two weeks to gain new ideas and learn about the experiences of others
  • Trust your passion
  • Make it a goal each day to stay happy even when you’re really busy
  • A business plan is important but the reality of the market is more vital
  • Be quick to share leadership with a person who’ll be better than you at certain tasks

FBN supports and celebrates the next generation of entrepreneurs through this prestigious, annual NxG Award. NxG entrepreneurs or intrapreneurs are encouraged to apply for the 2018 Award via nxg@fbn-i.org.

I’m excited to announce the 29th Annual World Summit (enter password: aidaf to view video) in Venice, Italy!! Mark your calendars for Oct 10-13! I hope to see many of you there, connecting with international families, learning from them and sharing your own stories! It’s you, the enterprising family that make FBN a vibrant peer learning community!

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Calendar of Events

How the Tax Reform Act Impacts You and Your Business: Planning Opportunities and Challenges
february 6, 2018, 1 PM Central Time
Learn More and register.

Raising Responsible Children and Growing Goodness
February 28, 2018 - 1-5 pm (PST)

La Valencia Hotel
lA jOLLA, CALIFORNIA

Raising moral, financially responsible and independent kids is no easy feat. This engaging session with 21/64’s new tool Growing Goodness reveals science-based best practices for raising responsible and productive children.  Learn with your peers about what’s working (or not working) in their families, and before you leave you’ll identify and prioritize next steps to help you adapt these ideas to your own family.  Learn more and register.

managing risk, innovation, and distruption
MARCH 1-2, 2018
La Valencia Hotel
lA jOLLA, CALIFORNIA

Risk, innovation, and disruption are integral to successful multigenerational family businesses. Risk and innovation are both disruptive yet often fruitful. Join families like yours as we explore the chemistry of these facets in the business, the family, philanthropy, and the family office. Hear personal stories from your closest peers that will help you successfully navigate the challenges of family and business complexity.  Learn more and register.

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FBN At A Glance

FBN-NA is the North American chapter of an esteemed, non-profit, international learning community for families with medium to large sized businesses.  We provide an intimate, confidential, and solicitation-free setting where families share experiences and learn from each other; By Families, For Families, Across Generations. 

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