Bronfman Family To Dissolve Family Trust
MONTREAL (AP) _ The family trust set up by the late Samuel Bronfman, who built Seagram Co. Ltd. into the world’s largest distiller, will be broken up this year to allow Bronfman’s heirs to invest their fortune as they see fit.
In a rare meeting with selected reporters, the late Canadian magnate’s son, Seagram co-chairman Charles Bronfman, said Wednesday the family holding company Cemp Investment Ltd. would be disbanded.
The change was intended to avert squabbles between 11 Canadian and U.S. cousins in the third generation of Bronfmans who will inherit the family’s multi-billion dollar fortune, he said.
″Most wealthy families, by the second or third generation, start quarrelling,″ Bronfman said at his Montreal office.
The name Cemp comes from the first letter in the names of Samuel Bronfman’s four children: Charles; his elder brother Edgar, who is chief executive officer at Seagram and based in New York; Minda who died in 1985, and Phyllis, a Montreal architect.
The trust was set up in 1951.
Bronfman also said a quarrel last year over whether Edgar’s son eventually would take over as Seagram chairman had been resolved.
Bronfman, who owns the Montreal Expos baseball team, said the family intended to retain its 38.3 percent ownership of Seagram. However, other investments may be dispersed.
Cemp will sell its major asset, a 40 percent stake in the real estate giant, Cadillac Fairview Corp. of Toronto.
Bronfman said he would transfer his Cemp assets into a separate company to be known as Claridge Investments. Bronfman’s personal fortune includes a 16.7 percent stake in Seagram.
His son, Stephen, 22, is associate director of communications for the Expos and has said he does not want to work at Seagram.