-Build the business and then sell it to extract money to fund my retirement. -Build a business that will endure for generations. -Provide employment for my family and friends. -Provide income during retirement or semiretirement.
A business can be an excellent tool to build assets for retirement and then extract them using a tax-advantaged strategy. An accountant or attorney that specializes in tax planning and counsel is your best investment if extracting cash from your corporation is your goal. It is important to structure your corporation to take advantage of these strategies. Depending on the state or province where you live, the strategies could vary somewhat so make sure you work with a local professional with experience in this area of corporate finance.
Providing employment for family and friends is a noble goal especially if you are a good manager and leader. If you are a control freak it may not work out well. I have seen family-run businesses do quite well. They are the exception, and typically their culture plays a big part in the management of the business. Often the matriarch or patriarch is the manager and the family members have worked in this situation from a very young age and control is not an issue; it is just the way things are.
To build a business for future generations will require a strong focus on building a culture that will endure after you are gone. You will have trained your successor to step into your shoes at the right time. Your business will need to serve a very wide spectrum of the market and have products that have a wide and deep adoption.
Buying a business to sell to use the cash for retirement can work it is just risky. Your timing has to be perfect. If you look at the stock market, very few people can accurately time the market profitably. Flipping a business is influenced by the same factors that impact the stock market and is just as vulnerable. So unless you know something no one else does about the market, you will want to reconsider investing in a business just to flip it in a few years at a profit. It has been done but the risk is substantial.