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Evolution of Family Business

Evolution of Family Business

Continuity and Change in Latin America and Spain

Edited by Paloma Fernández Pérez and Andrea Lluch

Family businesses are everywhere, but there is little information regarding their growth and development. This book is one of the few to analyse the identity and evolution of the largest family businesses in Latin America and Spain. With contributions from 20 scholars from 12 different countries, the book compares the relationship of families in business within their national economies, foreign capital, migration, and politics. The authors deny the existence of a ‘Latin type’ of family capitalism in their countries, and highlight diversity, and national and regional differences.

Chapter 6: Family capitalism in Argentina: changes and continuity over the course of a century

María Inés Barbero and Andrea Lluch

Subjects: business and management, family business, organisation studies


The aim of this chapter is to analyse the distinctive features and long-term evolution of Argentinian family capitalism in order to compare this case to other historical experiences and contribute to the international debate on family businesses in emerging countries. We investigate the relevance and organizational forms of the largest Argentinian family firms and provide evidence on how to explain their longevity, survival and failures from a long-term perspective. This chapter presents, for the first time, a quantitative evaluation of the significance and characteristics of the largest Argentinian family firms between 1923 and 2010, based on the nominal analysis of a series of rankings available for the 100 largest businesses for ten benchmark years (1923, 1937, 1944, 1954/56, 1970, 1980, 1990, 2004 and 2010), and the subsequent individualization of family-owned firms. This data allows us to evaluate the relevance and role of family firms between the 1920s and the 2000s. In order to analyse these processes, we have combined quantitative and qualitative analysis, using information from case histories, institutional histories, biographical dictionaries and other research relating to large Argentinian business families and Argentinian family firms.

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