Simonetta Ronco

Business and family relationships: a difficult cohabitation

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Family business is an important part of the European economy, a production model that has been able to combine company, family and heritage, and over the years has shown its effectiveness and potential, not only in the SME sector but also in large companies and in some cases of multinational companies. However, at European level there is no legally binding and harmonized definition of «family business» and for this reason the numerous studies that have been carried out to encourage the intervention of European governing bodies have highlighted many difficulties. Furthermore, the exercise of a family business activity takes on different connotations and different functions depending on the role that, from time to time, the family bond has in the internal organization of the company. The existence of a family bond, in fact, beyond the mere juridical importance, poses interesting points for reflection on the inevitable contrast between economic interests and personal interests, assigns an important role if not predominant to emotional dynamics and makes it even more clear and precise the dividing line between public interests and private interests. It can therefore be particularly interesting to be able to access the galaxy «family and business» trying to analyze the fundamental issues, in which economic and legal position the order places business relationships characterized by a parental or conjugal tie on the one hand and the relationships between the members of the entrepreneurial family and third parties understood on the other and, finally, what are the interests that are considered most deserving of protection in the context of a balancing operation.


  • Family Business
  • Production Model
  • Economic Interests
  • Personal Interests
  • Harmonization of the Legislation


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