The Wendel family: The Wendel Family: “Affectio Societatis” (A) – The Story of a French Industrial Dynasty (1704-1976)

Few of us have kin whose life spans hundreds of years, but the Wendel family could consider its baby long-lived. The family founded a company in 1704 and it’s still prosperous. Professor Ludo Van der Heyden and Christine Blondel trace the family tree and the family business in this case.

“This case shows the history of a large family firm over nine generations of family managers,” says Ms Blondel. “It is a remarkable story of continuity of a family business, not through steady growth, but through a series of renewals in hardship, made possible by the commitment of family members. The case shows that family businesses can be very large companies. It illustrates the role of roots and values, and a form of capitalism which goes beyond purely financial shareholder value.”

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