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Control in pyramidal structures

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  • Marc Lévy

Abstract

Today, the shareholding structure of companies is sometimes so complex that it can be difficult to find back their actual owners and controllers. In particular, in continental Europe and in Asia, control tunnelling appears frequently through pyramidal structure. After describing the ownership structure through a graph association, this paper analyses the voting game at stake in the race for control. It compares existing methods and algorithms to identify the owners and controllers of a firm in a pyramidal structure without cross-ownership. As a real life example, the case of the Belgian retail company, Colruyt, is used to apply these different methods and compare their results. Furthermore, it shows how the ownership structure allows to the Colruyt family to keep the control of Colruyt even if there are discordances inside the family.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles in its series ULB Institutional Repository with number 2013/14291.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Publication status: Published in: Corporate Governance (Oxford) (2009) v.17 n° 1,p.77-89
Handle: RePEc:ulb:ulbeco:2013/14291

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  1. Cheung, Yan-Leung & Stouraitis, Aris & Wong, Anita W.S., 2005. "Ownership concentration and executive compensation in closely held firms: Evidence from Hong Kong," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 511-532, September.
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  5. Crama, Y. & Leruth, L. & Renneboog, L.D.R. & Urbain, J-P., 1999. "Corporate Governance Structures, Control and Performance in European Markets: A Tale of Two Systems," Discussion Paper 1999-97, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
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  9. Lucian Bebchuk & Reinier Kraakman & George Triantis, 1999. "Stock Pyramids, Cross-Ownership, and the Dual Class Equity: The Creation and Agency Costs of Seperating Control from Cash Flow Rights," NBER Working Papers 6951, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Brioschi, Francesco & Buzzacchi, Luigi & Colombo, Massimo G., 1989. "Risk capital financing and the separation of ownership and control in business groups," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 13(4-5), pages 747-772, September.
  11. Randall K. Morck, 2000. "Concentrated Corporate Ownership," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number morc00-1, May.
  12. Claessens, Stijn & Djankov, Simeon & Lang, Larry H. P., 2000. "The separation of ownership and control in East Asian Corporations," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1-2), pages 81-112.
  13. Ariane Chapelle, 2001. "Corporate governance en Belgique: l'effet des pyramides," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/9933, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
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