Family Dynasties : The Evolution of Global Business in Scandinavia book cover
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Family Dynasties
The Evolution of Global Business in Scandinavia





ISBN 9780367735043
Published December 18, 2020 by Routledge
136 Pages

 
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Book Description

A remarkable fifteen Nordic family businesses are among the 500 biggest companies in the world and the Nordic countries have more dynasties than most others per capita and in GDP terms. The willingness, often reluctant, of both the political system and labour movement to accept asset accumulation has helped these Nordic businesses survive. The top 1% of Swedes own close to 25% of the country's wealth, as opposed to 16.5% of Spaniards, where dynasties are also abundant. The pattern has held a firm grip on the Nordic countries since the Industrial Revolution and emergence of free enterprise. The trend is particularly pronounced in comparison with the Anglo-Saxon countries – somewhat less so relative to places like Italy, Japan, Germany and South-Asian countries.



This book describes the factors and dynamics behind the ability of Nordic businesses to grow and thrive from one generation to the next in the process of becoming dynasties. Far from being commercial enterprises, they are a venue for power, philanthropy, passion, conflict, freedom and captivity. Like many other dynasties, the Nordic ones are a witch's brew of Machiavelli's Prince, Marx's belief in the potential of the meritocracy and Smith's baker who works to sustain his family. Topped by a spoonful of Weber's Protestant Ethic.



This book will be key readings for students and scholars of entrepreneurship, corporate governance, business history, Scandinavian history, family business and enterprises and the related disciplines.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Dynasties in the Age of Capitalism



The Lucky Sperm Club



Mature and emerging dynasties



Nordic dynasties



Missions to fulfil





Chapter 2: The Theory of Dynasty



Personal, family-based and managerial capitalism



Financial and human capital



Dynastic longings



Churchill's favourite marmalade?



Ants and grasshoppers



The good life outside the stock market



A conceptual model



Relational capital and value creation



Historichal anchor





Chapter 3: New Industry Logic



Nordic dynastic entrepreneurship in the nineteenth century



Merchant houses



Banking and the bourgeoisie



Inter-war dynasties



Entrepreneurship in the countryside of Jutland



Post-war dynasties



Society modernizes



Family-based retailers



Into the digital revolution



Countryside origins





Chapter 4: Strategy, Structure and Dynamics



Stick to what you know, or not



A structural evolutionary pattern



Conglomerates – a blind alley



Business groups



Bonnier – back to basics



The u-turn of Lego



Too much tradition kills



In the wrong industry at the wrong time



Continuity and discontinuity with historical roots





Chapter 5: Values and Credos



Servant of the people – Kamprad’s will



Renewal and the national interest – the Wallenbergs



Resolute leadership



Spotlight on customers – the Perssons, Rausings and Kann Rasmussens



The devil is in the details



Winning strategies





Chapter 6: Blood is Everything – Succession



Family do or die



Lonely spouses and cracks in the glass ceiling



Changing role of women



Shaky promises for the future



Sibling rivalry



A two-man show, or maybe not



The extended family



Sons-in-law and trials by fire



Culture of leadership



Frictionless succession



Passive owners without day-to-day management duties



Kinship triumphs





Chapter 7: Business, Politics and Culture



Political effort and conservative resistance



To ease the tax burdens



Welfare system alliances



A long tradition of mutual benefit



Give and take – a question of culture





Chapter 8: Conclusion



The weight of tradition



The future of dynasties – local is global

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Author(s)

Biography

Hans Sjögren is a professor at Linköping University and Stockholm School of Economics, Sweden.