In this chapter, we will give a face to the individual groups in our study, each of which presents a different pattern of internationalization and diversification. They are also among the strongest and most emblematic in the different national contexts. We follow the evolution of the groups from the establishment of the first companies to the creation of the current large, diversified conglomerates. This evolution is related to shifts in the global political economy, but also to the home countries’ political and economic history. It is striking that the majority of the groups did not grow out of the 19th and early 20th century agro-export elites, but rather originated from European immigrants arriving in the early 20th century and setting up small businesses in commerce, services, or industry. Another striking feature is that most of the groups have had leaders that in one way or another have been involved in politics — whether as members of government, as advisors, or by setting up their own political parties, think tanks or other kinds of organization.
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- From Oligarchs to Transnational Business Group Leaders? The Shifting Strategies of Key Business Groups
- Palgrave Macmillan UK