Family firms

Successions in family firms

How does the founder decide on who inherits the company? When is the company kept in the family and when is it sold? Keepig the firm in the family, will all children inherit shares or only one? If all inherit, is the inheritance equal across heirs? We outline these empirical observations below. 

We focus on the ownership transitions when the founder gives up a major portion of his initial ownership either at the time of death, or even before that. In particular, we identify 8000 Norwegian firms that have experienced a within-family ownership transition, and the founder had at least two children or stepchildren of legal age. 

We link the decision whether the ownership is passed to a single child or to multiple children to the potential of sibling conflicts that we proxy with family characteristics.

Empirical Observations