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Liberal Arts & Italian Culture
Fall 2021 Semester Florence

Flight Voucher $1,000 Flight Voucher when you apply with code by May 19, 2021

Course Overview


Family Business and Entrepreneurship

Family Business and Entrepreneurship Course Overview


CEA Partner Institution: CEA Florence Center
Location: Florence, Italy
Primary Subject Area: Business
Instruction in: English
Course Code: BUS337
Course Details: Level 300
Recommended Semester Credits: 3
Contact Hours: 45
Prerequisites: Two one-hundred or one two-hundred level course(s) in the subject area(s) of instruction.
Additional Fee: $145.00
Additional Fee Description:This course requires payment of an additional fee to cover active learning components that are above and beyond typical course costs, such as site visits, entrance fees and other expenses.


The course will begin by defining what is meant by Family Business and its importance to all economies, both developed and developing. Students will firstly become familiar with the entrepreneurship process through which a small business is created. This occurs when individuals identify opportunities, evaluate whether they are viable, and then assemble the resources needed to build a new venture. In the course, some of the unique issues faced by entrepreneurial firms and family businesses will also be presented.

Students will be guided through an examination of the challenges of managing small firms and an exploration of the realities of achieving growth. For instance, the following topics will be covered: family ownership (FIAT), family involvement in management (Ferrero) and the influence of a family over a business (including the legacy of a Family Business)(Gucci). Family Businesses have a significant part to play in economies; in Europe 67% of employees are employed in Family Businesses (Pozza, 2009). Performance, Ethics, Innovation and Quality will be proposed and critically evaluated as advantages of family controlled businesses. The course will also address the anatomy of Family Businesses looking at Management Structure, Control Mechanisms, Strategy Formation, Growth Strategy, Supply Chain Relationships, Financial Structure and Culture of Family Business.

The course will look at the specific issues surrounding a Family Business from birth and entrepreneurship, through growth stages (including red flags), into continuation to next generation ownership, partial ownership, corporate governance in Family Businesses, into devolvement of control of the business, including the termination strategies for a Family Business.

The course will be reinforced with case studies and visits to Family Businesses located in the Florence surroundings. Students will be encouraged to explore and in-bed themselves into the local Family Business tradition by means of site visits and meetings with representatives from such businesses.

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