Client Name: Patricia Jones
Business Name: Jones and Horan Auction Team, Inc.
Business Website: www.jones-horan.com
Industry: Auction Sales
Location: Goffstown, NH
SBDC Advisor's Name: Julie Glosner
Much like the antique watches, jewelry and coins they sell, the story of Jones & Horan Horological Auctions is quite beautiful and unique; the roots of which began on the Jones’ dairy farm in Goffstown, NH in the 40’s.
The 200-acre farm was owned by George F. Jones, father of George E. Jones, who co-owns Jones & Horan with his wife, Patty today. George’s father was kind enough to allow customers to barter items from their own home or barn to pay for their milk instead of cash. As they say, ‘one man’s junk is another’s treasure,’ so George E. would help his father buy and sell the bartered items. Soon, George was no longer just a boy helping his dad around the farm; he was an antique dealer, selling antiques through auctions.
Shortly after George married Patty (maiden name Horan), she left her career as a schoolteacher and became an auctioneer. George and Patty set off on their solo venture and started Jones & Horan Horological Auctions in the late 80’s. “Owning our business has been, I think what we were made for,” comments Patty. The antiques market seems to agree. The couple has worked hard at building their business and providing a great service over the years and today they now gross close to $8 Million a year in sales.
They have built something so successful and strong since those days on the dairy farm, that as the couple anticipates retirement, it’s important to them that Jones & Horan lives on even after they are gone. “I didn’t want to just dissolve the business. I wanted to allow for it to continue to offer what I consider to be a superior service.”
Patty and George hope to pass the business down to their employees, but as Patty explains, “once you start thinking about it, it gets kind of complicated.” So, about a year and a half ago, Patty reached out to the NH SBDC for help and started working with NH SBDC Southern Regional Director Julie Glosner, who later invited NH SBDC Business Advisor Hollis McGuire to join them. Julie recognized that Hollis’ knowledge and expertise in financial matters would be an asset as the Jones’ succession planning conversations continued.
Patty shares, “Julie Glosner and Hollis McGuire helped me immensely in formulating my succession plan.” They helped Patty to brainstorm her options and formulate a plan; a plan that will likely take years to execute. In addition, they connected her with an attorney who could verify they were on the right path with important items such as transfer of shares, tax implications, and profit sharing. Ensuring full support for every part of this journey, Julie accompanied Patty to the meeting with the attorney. “She was invaluable during the meeting, and getting the correct information from the lawyer,” says Patty.
Adding to Patty’s circle of resources and support, Julie and Hollis recommended that Patty see someone in Concord who specializes in succession planning. Patty has plans to work with him over the winter. But, while NH SBDC has connected Patty to these resources, they continue to be there for her throughout this process with ongoing meetings to provide guidance and support.
Of her experience with Julie and Hollis, Patty says, “they both set such a fine example of women in business for me.” She noted that in all their meetings and sharing of their expertise, they always made her feel like it was all about her and her business. Patty adds, “the both of them are so brilliant and professional that it was just a wonderful experience.”
Patty estimates the succession process will take about five years before she and George can retire, but with NH SBDC by their side, they are well on their way. She sees a bright future ahead, noting, “I now know how to keep the business up and running after I retire.”
Of her experience with NH SBDC, Patty shares,
“it’s an incredible opportunity and gift. It’s a fabulous resource for anybody trying to help their own business continue.