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Learning from the best: the world's 500 largest family businesses

Get inspired


The Center for Family Business at the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland has just published a new list of the 500 largest family-owned companies by revenue. If you are passionate about the family business sector like we are, you will find this fascinating. If you are just starting out in your family business, I think you will find it inspiring.


Together these 500 businesses:

  • Create enough revenue to be the 3rd largest economy in the world

  • Employ nearly 21 million people

  • Were established, on average, 88 years ago.


It's clear that business families make an invaluable contribution to the global economy.


According to a recent article in Forbes, the single thing that sets these business families apart is their superiority in generational transition. They seem to have found a way to get along, to communicate and “combine the rational world of business with the most emotional world of family.”


That is where Insights online educational and information tools can help you. Our catalogue of family business videos, hints and tips from international advisers, tutorials and short online courses are designed to encourage conversation and help shape the thinking of family businesses like yours. Communication and generational transition, skills that we can help with, are then integral to having a shared vision and creating a long term legacy in your family business. You could make the Top 500 one day!


A good place to start


If the single thing that sets these successful families apart is their ability to get along so they can discuss and plan transition, then this video is invaluable – Dr Joseph Astrachan, Family Business Expert on “Embracing Difficult Conversations as a Business Family.” Watch it to start your journey with Insights.

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