Heterogeneity in the size of family firms: the case of Mexico

Fernanda Canale Segovia, Carlos López-Hernández


A large percentage of Mexican firms can be classified as family businesses. These have a different reality from those that are not family-owned. Issues such as succession (understood as the transference of the firm’s ownership to successive generations), management and stock ownership, career plan and hiring plan for family members by the company, among many others, must be resolved to ensure these firms’ permanence. Firm size is variable that helps establish the scope of these issues. The question we sought to answer in this research is whether there is a homogenization in the classification of size and dimension of family businesses in Mexico. We found that there is no such pattern. We conducted an exhaustive literature review on company size, as well as an empirical study based on cases of private and public family firms in Mexico. We concluded that it is necessary to generate a multivariable classification that should simultaneously consider sales, number of employees and company assets, as well as any modern organizational structures that could have an impact on their categorization.


family firm; organizational structure; heterogeneity

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