Conflict Between Controlling Family Owners and Minority Shareholders: Much Ado About Nothing?

Geoffrey Martin, Luis R. Gómez-Mejía, Pascual Berrone, Marianna Makri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations


We examine the unique nature of conflict between controlling family owners and minority shareholders (principal–principal conflict) in publicly traded family controlled firms through examining shareholder proposals. Implicit in prior governance and family business research has been that nonfamily shareholders are likely to be in conflict with the dominant family owners. In general, we find that much of this fear may be unwarranted except under specific circumstances. Our findings elucidate sources of heterogeneity in family firm principal–principal conflict and add greater nuance to our understanding of this type of agency problem within family firms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)999-1027
Number of pages29
JournalEntrepreneurship: Theory and Practice
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2017


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Economics and Econometrics

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