Emotional attachment is frequently mentioned in science as a major reason for business acquisition deals falling through. However, hardly any research has been carried out into this phenomenon. This doctoral research focused on the following three questions. Which psychological barriers do incumbent business owners and their successors experience and to what extent? How do vendors cope with these barriers and which methods of coping are the most common? Which coping mechanisms are the most effective in overcoming emotional barriers and preventing the failure of business take-overs?