Family firms are the frequently discussed backbone of the German economy. However, many family firms are unfortunately not economically successful for several generations. A key success factor for the long-term survival of family firms is (besides other critical topics such as an adequate succession plan) a suitable financing strategy.
The WHU strengthens its faculty in the area of family firms with the assistant professorship of Dr. Leitterstorf. The main focus is to better understand the financing behavior of family firms. The aim is to compare not only the behavior of family firms vs. non-family firms, but also to assess the heterogeneity within the group of family firms. A potential long-term goal is the development of a capital structure theory for family firms. Such a theory (in contrast to traditional capital structure theories) would need to sufficiently address the non-economic goals that are particularly important for family firms.
Dr. Leitterstorf completed his doctorate in 2013 at the WHU with "summa cum laude" on “IPO Financing of Family Firms”. Results of his work were published in the Strategic Management Journal (SMJ) and presented at the conference of the Strategic Management Society (SMS). Dr. Leitterstorf has also reviewed for the Family Business Review (FBR). Before and after his dissertation, he worked for 4 years fulltime as a consultant at the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). At BCG, Dr. Leitterstorf consulted banks and industrial goods firms on corporate organization, restructuring and process optimization.