The determinants of the CEO successor choice in family firms

Iram Fatima Ansari, Marc Goergen, Svetlana Mira*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


This paper studies the factors that influence the CEO succession decision in family firms whose incumbent CEO is a member of the controlling family. The sample includes all such firms from France, Germany and the UK. We propose a new measure of directors' independence, which adjusts for various links with the controlling family. While we find that conventionally defined directors' independence has no impact on the CEO succession decision, our corrected measure reduces the likelihood of the successor being another family member. There is also evidence that firms from France that are cross-listed in the UK or USA are less likely to appoint another family CEO.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-25
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Corporate Finance
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2014


  • CEO succession
  • Corporate control and ownership
  • Corporate governance
  • Family firms
  • G32
  • G34

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Finance
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Strategy and Management


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