Authors: Judith Hacker; Michael Dowling
Addresses: Innovation and Technology Management, University of Regensburg, 93040 Regensburg, Germany ' Innovation and Technology Management, University of Regensburg, 93040 Regensburg, Germany
Abstract: In family firms, the transfer of ownership to one or several heirs who are also family members can be a difficult issue. In this study, using a sample of 152 German family firms, we investigated whether different forms of ownership transfer have distinct characteristics. Although we found no indication of successors having a worse relationship if unequal shares are transferred, we found that majority and minority shares are seen as a sign of less equal treatment. Furthermore, we found that if only one person receives company shares, the succession occurs earlier and the succession process is also shorter.
Keywords: family firms; ownership transfer; transfer of capital; succession process; family firm successors; Germany; entrepreneurship; majority shares; minority shares; equal treatment; equality.
International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2013 Vol.18 No.4, pp.428 - 442
Available online: 26 Apr 2013Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article