CAFE Canada

Member Profile

More than 200 CAFE Family Business Members from across Canada participated in an online survey in August 2012, the purpose of which was to better profile our membership and collect feedback on how CAFE and its Chapters can improve membership value and satisfaction. This was the first national survey of its kind in several years and revealed many insights that will help guide CAFE program and service development in the near term. The survey revealed that the typical CAFE Family Business Member had the following characteristics:

  • 88% are privately held companies owned and managed by a family;
  • Multi-generational business in existence for an average of 44 years;
  • Employ an average of 127 employees;
  • Have at least 2 family members in senior management positions;
  • 40% have annual gross sales greater than 10 million dollars;
  • 55% report the net worth of their family business is in excess of 5 million dollars.


















The average CAFE Member had the following characteristics:

  • 59% of respondents are CEO, President, Owner /Founder or the Chairman within their family business;
  • 46% are the second generation within the family business;
  • 60% male, 40% female; average 51 years old;
  • 80% are married with children; average 2 children;
  • 64% have a university degree or higher.        



















A relatively high percentage of respondents indicated that they did not employ any of the following best practices to govern their family business (which may be a reflection of the size, complexity and age of CAFE businesses):

  • 41% don’t use Family meetings or Family councils;
  • 75% don’t have a Family Constitution;
  • 74% don’t use an independent business board of directors/advisors;
  • 40% don’t use owner’s/shareholder’s meetings;
  • 83% don’t use a Family Office.

Members were very much aligned on the priority they assign to various strategic initiatives being pursued by CAFE, with the top 5 being:

#1 – Improve the PAG program with additional resources, tools and support;

#2 – Develop partnerships with educational organizations to bring more family business education to CAFE members;

#3 – Offer more educational workshops, seminars, speaker tours, etc…;

#4 – Offer more downloadable family business resources on the CAFE Website;

#5 – Launch a national marketing campaign to attract new members.

When asked what CAFE and its Chapters could do to increase the level of value for membership respondents provided hundreds of specific suggestions, but the most popular ones fell into the following categories:

  • Improving the quality and quantity of educational programming (seminars, workshops, webinars, etc…);
  • Improving the quantity and quality of social and networking events;
  • Providing access to more family business resources, tools, and information (online);
  • Expanding our membership and the number of PAGs – create a larger community of family businesses to connect with;
  • Enhancing the PAG experience with additional support and resources.

CAFE would like to thank those who participated in the survey and reassure all CAFE Members that steps are being taken to address the practical needs and wants articulated through the survey.