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Family, Partnerships, and Network: Reflections on the Strategies of the Salvadori Firm of Trento (17th-18th Centuries)

  • Cinzia Lorandini


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    This paper analyzes entrepreneurial behavior in the Ancient Regime and examines a particularly long-lived family business, the “Valentino e Isidoro Salvadori” firm, which operated in Trento for more than two centuries. The firm survived several generational transitions, it was engaged in many activities and partnerships, and it entered into an extensive network of Italian and Central-European operators. The Salvadori started as local shopkeepers and became merchant-entrepreneurs of international renown, involved at the same time in manufacturing, commercial, and financial activities, thus providing extensive material for a case study. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the strategies and the factors influencing the Salvadori’s entrepreneurial behavior in the seventeenth- and eighteenth centuries, taking into account the broader socio-economic, institutional, and cultural framework. After a long-period overview of the strategies adopted by the family, who started managing a diversified business and ended up specializing in the silk sector, a detailed analysis is devoted to the role of the family, the partnerships, and the network, paying particular attention to their impact on transaction costs, as well as on agency costs.

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    Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Trento, Italia in its series Department of Economics Working Papers with number 0707.

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    Date of creation: 2007
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    Handle: RePEc:trn:utwpde:0707
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