Government bailouts of corporate sectors in the COVID-19 crisis are part of a tripartite arrangement between government, business and institutional investors. Business should respond to the changing preferences of customers, employees and societies by identifying value propositions that justify the provision of risk capital by institutional investors. Critical to this is the determination and implementation of corporate purposes by owners and board directors that focus on inter-generational horizons. Family owners are particularly well placed to do this, but institutional investors need to make it part of their stewardship function as well. Measurement is key and significant reforms are required in the areas of accounting, valuation and reporting. Consistent with these observations, companies that had strong environmental, social and governance records performed better during the initial stages of the crisis, as did family owned firms and those that avoided high levels of leverage prior to the crisis.