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Published in: Journal of International Entrepreneurship 3/2020

23-12-2019

Familiness, socio-emotional goals and the internationalization of French family SMEs

Authors: Sami Basly, Paul-Laurent Saunier

Published in: Journal of International Entrepreneurship | Issue 3/2020

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Abstract

This paper analyzes the role of the owning family’s socio-emotional goals in explaining the level of exports in family small and medium enterprises (SMEs), while investigating the influence of family business essence as an antecedent of socio-emotional goals. A survey studying 46 French family SMEs and a model using partial least squares structural equation modeling reveal that two out of the five hypothesized socio-emotional goals exert an influence on exports intensity (one being positive and the other negative), while family business essence positively and significantly impacts four of the socio-emotional goals pursued by family owners. A positive relationship between the power and experience components of the familiness construct (F-PEC Scale), then between experience and the family business essence is also evidenced. The study helps to integrate previous empirical results regarding family business internationalization by combining the constructs of familiness and socio-emotional goals (the five dimensions of the latter being evaluated simultaneously) to provide a better explanation of the level of exports in family SMEs. It also addresses the issue of family firm heterogeneity by evidencing the role of family SMEs’ ownership structure, experience, and culture in shaping the various socio-emotional goals pursued by family business owners.
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Footnotes
1
For instance, according to the KPMG Family Business Survey (2013), 60% of all European companies are family businesses. In 2010, a report by Sun Yat-sen University, Zhejiang University, and Hong Kong-based family firm Lee Kum Kee showed that 85.4% of China’s private enterprises are family owned. In the Middle East, over 80% of businesses are either family run or family controlled (PWC Family Business Survey, 2012).
 
2
CEDEF (French Ministry of Economy): https://​www.​economie.​gouv.​fr/​cedef/​
 
3
Family Power, Experience and Culture.
 
4
“Entreprises familiales: Ouvrir son capital pour durer,” BPIFrance, Le Lab, 2018.
 
5
“The five attributes of enduring family businesses”, McKinsey&Company, 2010.
 
6
On a 3-year basis (2011–2014).
 
7
French “Directoire”
 
8
French “Conseil d’administration” or “Conseil de surveillance”
 
9
In some rare cases of firms owned by one family and managed by another one, the survey was sent to the family holding management role. In some other cases, if two family managers were of the same rank (CEO, for example), the older one was chosen.
 
10
Recommended by the SPSS statistical package.
 
11
Because an identical item belongs to the “Identification” sub-scale of SEW.
 
12
The items are: “Family members support the family business in discussions with friends, employees, and other family members”; “Deciding to be involved with the family business has a positive influence on my life”; “There is so much to be gained by participating with the family business on a long-term basis”.
 
13
The items are: “The majority of the shares in my family business are owned by family members”; “In my family business, most executive positions are occupied by family members”; and “The board of directors is mainly composed of family members”.
 
14
The measure of family involvement in management has a mean of 85.93% and a median of 100%.
 
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Metadata
Title
Familiness, socio-emotional goals and the internationalization of French family SMEs
Authors
Sami Basly
Paul-Laurent Saunier
Publication date
23-12-2019
Publisher
Springer US
Published in
Journal of International Entrepreneurship / Issue 3/2020
Print ISSN: 1570-7385
Electronic ISSN: 1573-7349
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s10843-019-00265-0

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