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Ownership and Management

August 22, 2014

The future of Luxottica’s non-family chief executive is up in the air due to reported tension with the family-owned firm’s founder over the strategic direction of the company.

The future of Luxottica’s non-family chief executive is up in the air due to reported tension with the family-owned firm’s founder over the strategic direction of the company.

Luxottica, which has annual revenues of €7.3 billion, includes brands such as Oakley, Ray-Ban and Oliver Peoples among its empire. It also has over 7,000 retail outlets operating under different banners including Sunglass Hut and OPSM.

August 4, 2014

Portugal’s government has announced a €4.9 billion plan to save family-controlled Banco Espirito Santo, the country’s largest listed bank, after a series of financial scandals threatened to run the 94-year-old lender into the ground. 

Portugal’s government has announced a €4.9 billion plan to save family-controlled Banco Espirito Santo, the country’s largest listed bank, after a series of financial scandals threatened to run the 94-year-old lender into the ground.

But while taxpayers and senior creditors will be protected in the package, shareholders, particularly the Espirito Santo family, and junior bondholders will be left with toxic assets.

July 30, 2014

The ousted chief executive of US supermarket chain Market Basket has gained a level of support from employees that is uncommon outside of family businesses, according to a Harvard Business School academic.

The ousted chief executive of US supermarket chain Market Basket has gained a level of support from employees that is uncommon outside of family businesses, according to a Harvard Business School academic.

Staff and customers have been boycotting the multi-billion dollar company since Arthur S Demoulas, who owns 51% of the company, removed his cousin Arthur T Demoulas from office last month, arguing that a popular profit-sharing scheme was cutting into shareholder profits.

July 23, 2014

Family businesses are more nimble and better able to respond to crises than non-family businesses, according to a new academic paper, which uses as a case study the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.

Family businesses are more nimble and better able to respond to crises than non-family businesses, according to a new academic paper, which uses as a case study the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.

July 21, 2014

The Forbes family has sold a controlling stake in its eponymous media empire to a Hong Kong-based consortium of international investors, bringing to an end 97 years of family ownership. 

The Forbes family has sold a controlling stake in its eponymous media empire to a Hong Kong-based consortium of international investors, bringing to an end 97 years of family ownership.

According to a statement released on Friday, the Forbes family will maintain a “significant stake” in the firm, while newly formed Integrated Whale Media Investments will assume control for an undisclosed figure.

July 18, 2014

A fourth-gen of George Weston Limited, the Canadian branch of the Weston family empire, has been promoted to the role of president at its supermarket subsidary Loblaws.

A fourth-gen of George Weston Limited, the Canadian branch of the Weston family empire, has been promoted to the role of president at its supermarket subsidary Loblaws.

Galen G Weston takes over from non-family predecessor Vicente Trius, who will return to Brazil for family reasons.

The Thursday reshuffle comes amid a string of acquisitions by the Weston family, who own 63% of Loblaws through George Weston Limited, including the $12.4 billion (€9.2 billion) acquisition of Shoppers Drug Mart this year.

July 17, 2014

Last week’s sale of kitchen appliance manufacturer Indesit, the latest in a long line of large Italian family businesses recently sold to foreigners, could be a wake up call for the government to make the country more business friendly, a family business academic says.

Last week’s sale of kitchen appliance manufacturer Indesit, the latest in a long line of large Italian family businesses recently sold to foreigners, could be a wake up call for the government to make the country more business friendly, a family business academic says.

The Merloni family sold its controlling 60.4% stake in the company to US competitor Whirlpool for €758 million, bringing to an end four generations of family control. It was the largest producer of home appliances in Italy.

July 17, 2014

A fresh-faced CEO straight out of business school isn't always the person to inspire public and investor confidence, but circumstances sometimes force a young candidate into the top spot at a family firm.

Picking a chief executive for any family business is a tough task. It is especially problematic if the company is bent on keeping a family member in the top job. This was the conundrum Gianni Agnelli faced when trying to prepare an heir to take the wheel of his family’s iconic Italian car brand Fiat. Drug addiction in his only son and then stomach cancer in his nephew saw his pool of potential successors whittled down to his 21-year-old grandson John Elkann.

July 15, 2014

Norwegian family office Ferd Capital has sold five companies to Nordic investment house Verdane Capital, in an effort to focus on larger and more mature companies. 

Norwegian family office Ferd Capital has sold five companies to Nordic investment house Verdane Capital, in an effort to focus on larger and more mature companies.

In a statement, Ferd Capital, owned by the Andresen family, said the sale of five software and energy companies would “free up valuable time and resources” for its new strategic direction.

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