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“Family businesses are the best form of capitalist businesses. But they also require outside impulses to develop their full potential.”


The love for family businesses is the foundation of our work.
Together we strive to make business-owning families stronger and their family businesses better. As a strong team. Committed to quality and integrity.
We want your entrepreneurial dream to live on. From one generation to the next.



“Family businesses are my passion. Growing up in a business owning family, the importance of a family business to its owners and society as a whole became apparent to me very early. But equally I became aware of the challenges we face when trying to make it a long-term success. I am happy that I was able to turn my passion to pass on knowledge and experiences into a profession.

Over the years of working with business owning families, I was lucky to work with incredible individuals and get to know family businesses from many different perspectives. As a family member and a shareholder. As a member of the advisory board and as a managing director. As a teacher, a consultant  and a trusted advisor to the family.Many friends have become clients. And many clients have become friends. I am grateful for that.

At the same time, I was given the opportunity to develop, employ and pass on theoretical concepts.

And I established INTES, a business that rapidly developed into a renowned institution within a young market. Meanwhile, we have  handed over INTES to an appropriate new owner. . I am delighted that PwC is advancing and spreading the INTES idea - worldwide.

I love my work and everything that comes with it.”




* January 12th, 1958 | married, 4 children | lawyer

Peter May is a leading expert on family businesses and a pioneer in the strategic consultation of their owners. In 2013, he was named “The Family Whisperer” by  a leading financial newspaper in Germany.

The lawyer and business economist consults and works with many of Germany’s leading entrepreneurial families and is the founder of Peter May Family Business Consulting.

peter may

In 1998 he founded INTES, the first consulting firm focused on the consultation and training of business owning families. Under his leadership INTES developed into the leading brand in its segment. In 2013,  PwC was entrusted with the entrepreneurial responsibilities of INTES . Since then, he has worked together with PwC and INTES as a strategic advisor and in conjoint projects.

Peter May is an Honorary Professor at WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management in Vallendar and has taught at some of the most distinguished business schools in Europe. In 2008 and 2009, he was IMD’s Wild Group Chair of Family Business in Lausanne.

Peter May developed a number of important concepts for the consultation of Family Business owners, including the INTES-Principle, the 3-Dimensions-Model, the Owner-Strategy and the Family-Constitution.

He also founded many initiatives for family businesses, amongst others the worlds’ first Governance Code for Family Businesses (2004) and the German Family Business Entrepreneur of the Year award (est. 2004). Furthermore, he was involved in the initiation of the German Chapter of the Family Business Network (FBN,(est. 2000) and the Institute of Family Businesses at WHU. Peter May is president of the governance-commission, jury chairman for the Family Business Entrepreneur of the Year award, and managing director of FBN Germany.

By founding the “Unternehmer Erfolgforum” (Family Entrepreneurs’ Success Forum) at Schloss Bensberg (est. 1998), he established one of the most important conferences for business-owning families in Germany.

Moreover, Peter May is the author and publisher of more than 100 publications on the topic of Family Businesses (including the “Lexikon der deutschen Familien Unternehmen” and the “UnternehmerBrief”).  His standard work “Erfolgsmodell Familienunternehmen” has been translated into numerous languages.



The tension between families and businesses has been fascinating me over and over again. The conflict of factual and emotional aspects frequently entangles families in a mess of unanswered questions and misunderstandings – a mess that can hurt the family. This vicious cycle needs to be overcome and each member of the family has to be able to sufficiently express their concerns. This lays the groundwork for finding permanent solutions for the family and the business. This is not only my job and my contribution to business-owning families – it is also my passion.




* August 6th, 1964 | married, one child | lawyer, tax accountant

Karin Ebel is an approved expert for family businesses and their business owning families. Due to her great experience when it comes to working with business owning families and her judicial and fiscal expertise, she allows a unique approach to the creation of owner-strategies and concepts of succession. She connects structure with emotions – and hence develops individual solutions for business owning families.

karin ebel

After finishing her legal and economic degrees, Karin Ebel joined a renowned law firm in Düsseldorf in 1993 to gain her first experiences at working with family businesses. In 2000, she became a partner at INTES and has been working closely with Peter May ever since. They conjointly established the advisory branch of INTES. She founded her own consulting firm “Unternehmer-Societaet” in 2010. Since 2016, she is a partner at Peter May Family Business Consulting. In addition to that, she is part of the network of INTES Akademie für Familienunternehmen.


There are other highly qualified colleagues working alongside the two partners to support our projects and our work.


is a lawyer with a master’s degree in mediation  and a systematic coach and has been working with us since 2008. Due to her special qualification concerning legal and systemic matters, she is especially involved in processes of personal orientation and decision-making, conflict resolutions and the development of strategic concepts for business owning families. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

karin may


is a lawyer and has been working with us since 2000. She is an expert at developing and legally processing concepts of the succession within a family business. In addition to that, she accompanies the family during the process of succession. Dr. Bahadir is a long-time lecturer of economic and legal studies at various colleges of higher education.

joke bahadir


is Germany's leading expert on the scientific research of family businesses. She is also the author of numerous publications and scientific contributions on the subject of family businesses. In addition, she has been advising entrepreneurial families for many years with passion and success. As an academic consultant at PETER MAY Family Business Consulting, she promotes the exchange between academic research and consulting methodology and is involved in selected consulting projects.

sabine rau


The doctor of business administration comes from an entrepreneurial family and has more than 20 years of management experience in the family business Wilh. Hamm. After the merger of Hamm and Reno, he led the company until the beginning of 2017 as Chairman of the Board. As a partner of PETER MAY Family Business Consulting, he ensures the successful implementation of your owner strategy and accompanies you as an active advisor, coach or personal adviser in the development and implementation of strategic decisions for you as owner.



Our guideline is simple: We desire to be able to answer all owner-strategic questions a business owning family is confronted with – in a competent, experienced and independent way. And with the highest standard of quality.

That is why we have added a network of highly qualified colleagues to our core team – autonomous owner advisors that we know and trust. Who share our values and our quality standards and employ our methods in their work.

Selected partners  from  different areas of expertise:

  • legal and fiscal consultancy
  • auditing
  • consultancy
  • financial consultancy
  • owner qualification (family education)
  • personal coaching
  • placement of advisory boards
  • placement of equity capital

complete our team an ensure that the owner strategy is realized to the greatest possible extent. In a professional way and following our guidelines.

The list of partners includes our colleagues at INTES Akademie für Familienunternehmen and PwC, who are exceptionally close partners of our firm. Here is an example of our cooperation.


We do not talk about our clients. But we do not object to our clients or others talking about us. In the following, please find some statements others have made about our work and about us.

“The family whisperer: Peter May has looked through some keyholes that many others would like to peek through as well. He is one of the few lawyers and consultants in Germany that were able to gain the trust of an economically interesting species:  the family business owners.” (Handelsblatt; 21.05.2013)

“Peter May has fought for the development of an economic theory for family businesses like no other. He is a stroke of luck for family businesses.” (Dr. Reinhard Zinkann, Miele)

“We worked very well and intensely with Peter May. The difficult task of successfully integrating a family member as a successor was solved in a wonderful manner. He provoked us with ideal concepts, and then empathically aided us in developing practical solutions.” (Volkmar Wywiol, Stern-Wywiol-Gruppe)

“Karin Ebel is an excellent counsel when it comes to the process of succession. She excels at moderating highly sensitive and emotional topics emphatically but also very clearly and objectively.” (Dr. Lis Hannemann-Strenger, Unternehmensgruppe Strenger)

“Both moderators boast great professionalism and outstanding expertise. We received valuable advice on how to construct the process of succession and how to ensure a strong cohesion within the business owning families.” (Friedrich Hofmann, Wittmann & Hofmann AG)

“Peter May’s incredible work was a crucial guidance for the development of our corporate and family constitution that is being supported by all parties concerned. We as a family are very thankful for that.” (Ernst Freiberger, Freiberger Gruppe)

“Karin Ebel does not only possess a great sensibility in terms of people’s mental states, she also presents the wit and competence that are essential to analyse complex matters and to develop helpful proposals and solutions. She anticipates people’s concerns and problems that might occur and she responds emphatically to everyone at the able, but, after all, always succeeds at summarizing the problems in a way that allows the group to draw valuable conclusions” (Dr. Florian Langenscheidt)

“Besides your professionalism and consultation service you have a high sensitivity for the complex situations family business owners find themselves in. From our meetings I can tell that you are not just talking about the entrepreneurial gene but that you have it yourself.” (Berndhard Simon, Dachser)

“We are thankful for many great years of working together” (Karl-Erivan Haub, Tengelmann)