This dissertation sets out a study of the family businessâ€™s corporate governance, addressing the relationship between the owners and the management. Family businesses constitute a wide spectrum of enterprises, from small family owned and managed companies to a large internationally operating family controlled corporations. There are several definitions illustrates the family owned businesses, however the majority agree that Nebauer & Lank definition illustrate the family business in a simple way and puts it as â€œ A firm can be regarded as a family business if a given family holds the voting control of the firmâ€? (Nebauer & Lank, 1998).
This dissertation argues that, given the duality of the economic and non-economic goals family firms pursue and the complexity of the stakeholders structure, family firms need governance structure that matches the complexity of their constitutes stakeholders. According to that a better research and empirical understanding as how family firms are governed is needed. In this study the focus will be on assessing the level of understanding of the corporate governance concept overall and the codes provided by the Capital Market Authority (CMA), the Capital Market Authority in Oman focusing on strengthen the family owned business by incentives them to go public. The CMA is just recently in the process to create a corporate governance to help the Family business to be prepared to do so. In this study, the focus will be to create an understating and help to create a better code to help the family business sustain in the future. On the other hand there will be an evaluation of the agency theory and how the family owners acceptance of this model. Furthermore a research by McKinsey quarterly shows that 95 per cent fails to succeed the generation due to the lacking of succession planning and roles defining, therefore the dissertation will be evaluating the practice and preparation if any on how the existing owner prepare companyâ€™s succession planning rules and codes to handover their responsibilities to their successors.
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In this study the focus will be on the family businesses in Sultanate of Oman, a country in the Arabian Gulf with a fledgling capital market. Oman has made significant efforts to improves the level of corporate governance, particularly in the listed companies and now the capital market would like to expand its corporate governance codes to the family owned businesses to strengthen the chances of the sustainability of its growth.
This dissertation will focus on the unique corporate governance challenges that any family business faces and propose structures and practices that can mitigate these challenges and ensure the viability of the business. The detailed objectives that guide the dissertation process are:
To review and analyze relevant theoretical, and other, streams of literature that focus on corporate governance and family business
Analyzing the practice of the existing code of corporate governance that applied by the CMA and if it fit to be implemented in the family business companies.
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