Diversification Decisions in Family-Controlled Firms


Luis R. Gomez-Mejia, Benton Cocanougher Chair in Business, Mays Business School, Texas A&M University, 4221 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843, USA (luis.gomez-mejia@asu.edu).


This study examines diversification decisions of family firms and suggests that on average family firms diversify less both domestically and internationally than non-family firms. When they do diversify, family firms tend to opt for domestic rather than international diversification, and those that go the latter route prefer to choose regions that are ‘culturally close’. Lastly, we find that family firms are more willing to diversify as business risk increases. The hypotheses are tested using a sample of 360 firms, 160 of them being family-controlled and the rest (200) non-family-controlled.