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Abstract

The case is an example of how a family can control a large conglomerate - TECO Electric & Machinery, a Taiwanese engineering business - yet with almost no ownership stake. Founded by five prominent business families in 1956, TECO has been run by Mao-Hsiung 'Theodore' Huang for the past 50 years, the son in law of the former CEO and co-founder, who married into the dominant founding family and rose up the ranks. Theodore's eldest son, Eugene, is impatient take over the reins. However, he makes a discovery just before the Annual General Meeting in 2021 and reaches the conclusion that at 83, his father simply does not want his son to take over the leadership, and will control the company from behind the scenes via non-family professionals he has installed in the executive suite. The case highlights a dilemma facing many Asian family-owned companies dominated by octogenarians who don't know how to retire gracefully. It also addresses some of the ambiguities of bringing in non-family professionals when perhaps the ulterior motive is to avoid a change of leadership.

Time period

The events covered by this case took place in 1956-2022.

Geographical setting

Region:
Asia

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Abstract

The case is an example of how a family can control a large conglomerate - TECO Electric & Machinery, a Taiwanese engineering business - yet with almost no ownership stake. Founded by five prominent business families in 1956, TECO has been run by Mao-Hsiung 'Theodore' Huang for the past 50 years, the son in law of the former CEO and co-founder, who married into the dominant founding family and rose up the ranks. Theodore's eldest son, Eugene, is impatient take over the reins. However, he makes a discovery just before the Annual General Meeting in 2021 and reaches the conclusion that at 83, his father simply does not want his son to take over the leadership, and will control the company from behind the scenes via non-family professionals he has installed in the executive suite. The case highlights a dilemma facing many Asian family-owned companies dominated by octogenarians who don't know how to retire gracefully. It also addresses some of the ambiguities of bringing in non-family professionals when perhaps the ulterior motive is to avoid a change of leadership.

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Time period

The events covered by this case took place in 1956-2022.

Geographical setting

Region:
Asia

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