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Family Business

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published: 22 Apr 2016

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Industry: Commodities
  • Region: North America

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Abstract:
Founded in 1865, Cargill one of the world's largest family businesses but has faced several challenges as it transitions from generation to generation. Business succession is complicated by the involvement of two families; the Cargills and their in-laws the MacMillans. A difficult transition to an in-law in the early 1900s eventually resulted in the Cargills losing control. However, the animosity between the two families focused their attention on building a vision based on shared values of entrepreneurship, fair play and a commitment to long-term family ownership.

Pedagogical Objectives:
This case explores family business role transitions and the challenges of family investment and liquidity. It also discusses the importance of managing beyond the family, the importance of entrepreneurial innovation, and effective communication in family businesses. Finally, it demonstrates the concept of stewardship as an ownership model.

Keywords:
Family Business Transitions, Family Investment, Stewardship, Non-Family Executives, Fair Process, Communication in Family Business, Succession Planning, Family Business Liquidity, Corporate Governance, Corporate Governance for Family Firms, Wicfe, Succession, Next Generation, Fair Process, Communication, Psychology, Gender, Governance, Parallel Planning, Strategy, Boards

published: 24 Mar 2016

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Industry: Sale of food, beverages and tobacco via stalls and markets
  • Region: Asia

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Abstract:
The case highlights the infighting within a Thai family who own and operate a fresh-food market stall business in Bangkok. The case explores the depths to which the Thammawattana dynasty sank in order to keep control of a profitable cash-in-hand business that had made the matriarch, Suwapee Thammawattana, a billionaire by the time of her death at age 65.

Pedagogical Objectives:
After reading and analysing the case, students will be able to evaluate the importance for family businesses of having a long-term succession plan. Against the bloodstained backdrop of a family business in Thailand, students will learn about the challenges of succession in an emerging country. The case enables them to discuss the importance of cohesion among the members of a family business.

Keywords:
Thailand, Family Business, Thammawattana, Ying Charoen, Market Stalls, Linacre, Porntip, King Bhumibol, Corporate Governance, Corporate Governance for Family Firms, Wicfe, Succession, Next Generation, Fair Process, Communication, Psychology, Gender, Education, Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Women in Family Business, Gender

published: 27 Jul 2015

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Industry: Chocolate industry
  • Region: Europe

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Abstract:
The first of this two-part case, “Principled Capitalism”, analyses the unique values-based leadership practised for 186 years by the Cadbury owners, particularly how its strongly Quaker-inspired leaders developed a unique socially-engaged form of capitalism. Through the history of the Cadbury family, it describes the global development of the chocolate industry. Driven by a handful of dedicated entrepreneurs, and dominated in the UK by Quakers, it was an industry where an innovation could change the market overnight. Part 2 “Sold for 20p” analyses the many governance challenges the Cadburys faced. From their merger with the troubled Fry’s in 1918, which significantly enlarged the number of family owners, the transfer of their ownership to charity foundations, the motivation and long-term consequences of listing the firm in 1962, a strategic merger with Schweppes in 1969 and forced demerger in 2008, and the family’s exit with the hostile takeover by Kraft in 2010, it offers valuable lessons in how family firms can use ownership design to mitigate business and family roadblocks, and how dilution of ownership can have unforeseen consequences and ultimately leave the family firm vulnerable to predators.

Pedagogical Objectives:
. Understand the long-term family ownership and control . Understand the benefits and costs of going public . Understand why families exit their businesses

Keywords:
Chocolate Industry, Family Ownership, Family Control, Family Assets, Quaker Values, Going Public, Cadbury Code, Mergers and Split Ups, Corporate Social Responsibility, European Competitiveness, Europe, Best Practices, Hedge Funds, Control Contest, Hostile Take Overs, Family Exit, Corporate Governance, Wicfe, Succession, Next Generation, Education, Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Governance, Parallel Planning, Strategy, Boards, Social Entrepreneurship, Impact Investing, Philanthropy

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published: 27 Jul 2015

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Industry: Chocolate industry
  • Region: Europe

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Abstract:
The first of this two-part case, “Principled Capitalism”, analyses the unique values-based leadership practised for 186 years by the Cadbury owners, particularly how its strongly Quaker-inspired leaders developed a unique socially-engaged form of capitalism. Through the history of the Cadbury family, it describes the global development of the chocolate industry. Driven by a handful of dedicated entrepreneurs, and dominated in the UK by Quakers, it was an industry where an innovation could change the market overnight. Part 2 “Sold for 20p” analyses the many governance challenges the Cadburys faced. From their merger with the troubled Fry’s in 1918, which significantly enlarged the number of family owners, the transfer of their ownership to charity foundations, the motivation and long-term consequences of listing the firm in 1962, a strategic merger with Schweppes in 1969 and forced demerger in 2008, and the family’s exit with the hostile takeover by Kraft in 2010, it offers valuable lessons in how family firms can use ownership design to mitigate business and family roadblocks, and how dilution of ownership can have unforeseen consequences and ultimately leave the family firm vulnerable to predators.

Pedagogical Objectives:
. Understand the long-term family ownership and control . Understand the benefits and costs of going public . Understand why families exit their businesses

Keywords:
Chocolate Industry, Family Ownership, Family Control, Family Assets, Quaker Values, Going Public, Cadbury Code, Mergers and Split Ups, Corporate Social Responsibility, Hedge Funds, Control Contest, Hostile Take Overs, Family Exit, Corporate Governance, European Competitiveness, Europe, Best Practices, Wicfe, Succession, Next Generation, Education, Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Governance, Parallel Planning, Strategy, Boards, Social Entrepreneurship, Impact Investing, Philanthropy

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published: 29 Jun 2015

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Region: Middle-East

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Abstract:
Growing family businesses need to create new governance structures to ensure the alignment of family expectations with the needs of the business, as well as accountability. As the family and business mature, and ownership/management functions are separated, the role of the family is increasingly one of governance. Alignment of family and business governance processes among family, owners and management is therefore an important family responsibility.

Pedagogical Objectives:
This case helps owners, management and boards appreciate the role of family and business governance in decision making and accountability. It also encourages business families to heed the challenges they face in planning and decision making. Family governance is much more complex than business governance because the structures and processes involved depend on the family’s values, characteristics, shared experiences and business situation.

Keywords:
Family Business, Next Generation, Board of Directors, Governance, Philanthropy

published: 29 Jun 2015

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Industry: Retail distribution
  • Region: Europe

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Abstract:
The Mulliez family owns one of the largest retail empires in the world. From its origins in northern France, its members have launched more than 20 different retail enterprises including Auchan (supermarkets), Boulanger (electronic devices), Decathlon (sports stores), Phildar (hosiery and yarn) and many other well-known brands. With more than 700 family members currently, they have nurtured a unique business model whereby new generations receive an in-house education and incentives are provided through innovative ownership design. The case identifies the contributions of the Mulliez family that underpin the conglomerate´s successful business strategy. It also analyses the challenges facing the family and its use of special governance structures to mitigate them.

Pedagogical Objectives:
The case highlights the role of leadership, the importance of culture, and the need for control systems. After reading and analysing the case, students will be able to: 1) Evaluate the importance of family assets. 2) Analyse to what extent the family values are transferable to new generations, including new family owners and professional managers. 3) See how the family implements business and governance strategies based on its assets.

Keywords:
Mulliez, Family, Business, Entrepreneurship, Distribution, Governance, Succession, Retail, European Competitiveness, Europe, Best Practices, Wicfe, Succession, Next Generation, Education, Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Governance, Parallel Planning, Strategy, Boards, Social Entrepreneurship, Impact Investing, Philanthropy, Family Office, Wealth Management, Legacy, Ownership

published: 29 Jun 2015

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Industry: Restaurant
  • Region: Asia

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Abstract:
The Kam family has owned Yung Kee, a huge 750-seat restaurant in Hong Kong, for more than 50 years. Starting out as a food stall, the business still 'packs them in' today. However, soon after the death of the patriarch, at the age of 96, in 2004, his two oldest sons became embroiled in a bitter and very public family feud over the restaurant's management and the family fortune, estimated to be worth HK$2 billion.

Pedagogical Objectives:
The case offers an excellent introduction to the complexities of succession in family businesses. Most students think of ownership design as a simple transfer of assets from one generation to another. As a result they fail to consider the larger social interests of the surviving family members. The Yung Kee case has the advantage of being readily accessible while giving ample opportunity to ask questions about ownership design.

Keywords:
Hong Kong, China, Restaurant, Shareholdings, British Virgin Islands, Succession, Family, Dispute, Wicfe, Succession, Next Generation, Fair Process, Communication, Psychology, Gender

published: 28 Apr 2014

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
Studying or practicing? Being an entrepreneur or a manager? Working for the family business or not? How much should business-owning families support their young? The Trusted Family case discusses some fundamental dilemmas of next-generation family business members. It follows two young family entrepreneurs who launch their own company, a social media platform for other family businesses, thus finding not only a new way of working with the family business, but also how to leverage it.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1) Discussing career options for next-generation members, understanding the value of making one's own choices, understanding one's own position in a family business. 2) Discussing the pros and cons of providing support to a business as a parent and of the intergenerational dialogue. 3) Demonstrating the stages of entrepreneurship from opportunity recognition to professionalization and the role of the entrepreneurial team.

Keywords:
Family Business, Startup, Career Planning, Next Generation, Social Media, Parent Generation, Entrepreneurial Teams, Professionalization

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published: 28 Apr 2014

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
Studying or practicing? Being an entrepreneur or a manager? Working for the family business or not? How much should business-owning families support their young? The Trusted Family case discusses some fundamental dilemmas of next-generation family business members. It follows two young family entrepreneurs who launch their own company, a social media platform for other family businesses, thus finding not only a new way of working with the family business, but also how to leverage it.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1) Discussing career options for next-generation members, understanding the value of making one's own choices, understanding one's own position in a family business. 2) Discussing the pros and cons of providing support to a business as a parent and of the intergenerational dialogue. 3) Demonstrating the stages of entrepreneurship from opportunity recognition to professionalization and the role of the entrepreneurial team.

Keywords:
Family Business, Startup, Career Planning, Next Generation, Social Media, Parent Generation, Entrepreneurial Teams, Professionalization

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published: 25 Nov 2013

  • Topic: Family Business
  • Region: Asia

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Abstract:
Succession patterns in Asia are heavily influenced by Confucian values and traditions. Liu Bai's father's authoritarian style of management was typical of Chinese families, but his critical and demanding manner made it impossible for Bai to work with him, even in the Asian context. While it may seem aberrant to Westerners, children are supposed to bow to the Confucian ideal of the patriarch, even more powerful than the state as far as the welfare and governance of the family is concerned. Conflicts are settled by the family, within the family.

Pedagogical Objectives:
To explore the impact of gender in family business succession; To recognize the limits of rational business thinking in highly emotional family situations; To appreciate how life cycle influences and motivates succession decisions and actions; To consider careers and succession in a family systemic framework to identify the interdependencies and interrelationships of succession decisions.

Keywords:
Family Business, Business Conflicts, Succession, Business Continuity, Wicfe, Succession, Next Generation, Governance, Parallel Planning, Strategy, Boards

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