Governance Structure and Performance of Private Family Firms
Journal of Economics and Finance, Forthcoming
34 Pages Posted: 2 Jan 2019
Date Written: July 17, 2018
A debate exists on the issue of whether a governance system is value additive or even necessary for a privately-held firm. One side of the debate suggests that, in absence of agency problems, a private firm does not need a costly governance system. The other side argues that a private firm indeed faces agency costs in the form of altruism and, therefore, could extract net gains from a governance system. In this paper, we empirically investigate whether a good governance system crates or destroys value of private family firms. We first demonstrate that a multifamily firm encounters larger agency costs stemming from inter-family conflicts, and therefore, has larger incentive than a single-family firm to institute a superior governance system. We then show that a multifamily firm, owing to its better governance system, outperforms its single-family counterpart.
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