Outsourced Accounting / Alternative Business Structures That Might Be Right for Your Company

Alternative Business Structures That Might Be Right for Your Company

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, many aspects of business have changed, including (in some sectors) the increasing availability of private equity, the burgeoning use of AI, the ongoing difficulties in finding talented personnel and the shifting of generational goals and ideals. There are many ways that businesses can respond. One way is to change to an alternative business structure. Professional partnerships, for example, are one way to remain profitable and sustainable.

Alternatives to traditional business models such as sole proprietorships, S corporations, C corporations, partnerships and limited liability companies, include the following.

  • Split-ups. Instead of remaining one entity, a company may consider splitting into separate businesses. For example, a company that manufactures both men’s and women’s clothing could choose to operate as two separate companies, one for each gender. Some companies split their organization because one portion of the business is regulated and the other is not. Private equity companies are among those that may be attracted to businesses that take this route, either because the investors are interested in just one portion of the business or because regulations prevent them from investing in the entire venture.
  • Employee stock ownership plans. ESOPs are defined benefit plans that have been around for decades and are currently enjoying a renaissance. Essentially, ESOPs are trust funds funded by the business. They can be set up in one of three ways: The employees own the entire company or have a majority or minority stake in it. All eligible participants receive a compensation-based percentage each year, and that percentage is the same for everyone, from the CEO to the cleaning crew. While ESOPs are not right for all businesses, they give eligible employees a stake in the business, which often fosters loyalty and engagement.
  • Benefit corporations. B corps are for-profit entities created to make a social impact on society by merging the traditional for-profit business model with a nonprofit model. In other words, B corps take a public interest (for example, in the environment) into consideration before making business decisions; maximizing shareholder wealth is not their only business goal. But not all states recognize B corps; additionally, proving social benefit can be a lengthy process. Companies in states that recognize B corps should be sure to register with the state so they can use the designation in marketing and promotional materials.

How BlueStone Services Can Help
Moving to a new business model is not the best answer for every company, but if your company wants to consider a change, consulting with us! Changing a business structure is complicated, and we’re here to help you with tax and regulatory implications. Contact us today to get started. 

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