PASSING THE TORCH: From Father to Daughter, Local Biz Talks Transition

12 Jan 2023


On Sunday, Jan. 1, just as smoothly, quietly, and effortlessly as the automated, motorized window coverings he sells, Larry Kleist – owner for the past 28 years of The Bed, Bath & Drapery Shop, 3475 E. Hamilton Ave. – turned over the keys of the store to its new owner. He didn’t need to go far. In fact, he handed them across the kitchen table to his daughter Susie Kleist, adding the store now to the list of woman-owned businesses in the Chippewa Valley. 

For entrepreneurs, starting a business – whether family-owned or not – is risky. Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that only 25% of new businesses make it to 15 years or more. A business succession plan ensures that a family-owned business, whether large or small, will continue to run successfully once the owner, founder, or leaders leave for whatever reason.

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