Making sense of the 'business group' in modern china

the rong brothers' businesses, 1901-37

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Some China scholars have suggested that 'business groups' in pre-Communist China adopted a 'hierarchical' structure of management. This perception is re-examined in a study of the inter-firm relationship among the firms in which the Rong brothers, prominent industrialists of the 1910-30s, invested. We find that equity control, marketing, purchasing, and financing of these firms show a high degree of individuality among the firms, while the Headquarters Company functioned as their coordinator. It suggests that the hierarchical-controlled 'business group' structure in pre-war China is either a phantom creation of historians or the projected image of later generations who created it during the nationalisation of firms in the 1950s.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-244
Number of pages26
JournalAustralian Economic History Review
Volume51
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Nov 1

Fingerprint

Modern China
Business Groups
Brothers
Sensemaking
China
Business groups
Equity
Nationalization
Hierarchical structure
Marketing
Interfirm relationships
Purchasing
Financing
Headquarters
Industrialists
Co-ordinator
Individuality
Communist
Hierarchical Structure
Controlled

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • History
  • Economics and Econometrics

Cite this

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Making sense of the 'business group' in modern china : the rong brothers' businesses, 1901-37. / Chan, Kai-Yiu.

In: Australian Economic History Review, Vol. 51, No. 3, 01.11.2011, p. 219-244.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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