Chicago to Host the 21st Family Business Network International Summit

'Innovation: Keeping the Family Business Vibrant for Generations'

Feb 16, 2010, 13:17 ET from Family Business Network

NEW YORK, Feb. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- The 21st Summit of the Family Business Network (, the nonprofit leading international family business organization, will hold its annual Summit at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago October 1-2, 2010.

More than 500 CEOs, owners and family owners of the world's most powerful global families from 40 countries will discuss how they combine their deep-rooted traditions with a higher level of risk taking to continually innovate. "Family companies can reinvent themselves, invest for the long term and take risks in ways that publicly held companies cannot. Harnessed successfully, family businesses' values and principles make them ideal engines for innovation of all kinds," Thierry Lombard, Chairman of FBN International said. "These companies can therefore deepen their contributions to community and society by maintaining and creating jobs."

The FBN International Summit is organized for the first time in the United States since its launch in 1990. "After Amsterdam (2009), New Delhi (2008), and Berlin (2007), Chicago is the perfect choice to bridge tradition and the future. This is no coincidence," Lombard said. In the USA, according to a study by Astrachan and Shanker, family businesses account for 50% of the GDP, and 35% of Fortune 500 companies are family companies. Altogether these companies are responsible for 60% of the nation's employment and 78% of newly created jobs. In Europe, family owned businesses account for 49% of France's employment, 44% of Germany's and 31% of Great Britain's, according to the FBN-Gallup survey. Only Swedish family businesses account for a higher percentage of jobs (61%).

In the midst of the economic crisis, FBN urges family businesses to continue to demonstrate their strength and the quality of their governance, stating: "The global system is discovering that without human values and continuous innovation, economic success cannot last."

The 21st FBN International Summit will feature worldwide renowned speakers, CEOs of the largest family owned companies, and decision makers. Live case-studies to share best practices will be organized. Past live cases have included The New York Times, Lego, SC Johnson, Hermes, Laird Norton, and Roche. Former speakers have included Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel, Giovanni Agnelli, President George Bush Sr., and Sir Adrian Cadbury.

About the Family Business Network

The Family Business Network (FBN) is the leading international family business organization with more than 3,400 member companies in 45 countries. FBN member companies cover many industries and range in size up to large international corporations that have passed through several generations. The Family Business Network and FBN members share the following common objectives and mutually support: promoting family business, developing new generation opportunities and sharing best practices and knowledge within the network.

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