Joachim Schwass

Professor Emeritus of Family Business and Entrepreneurship and founder of the IMD Global Family Business Center

Joachim Schwass is Professor Emeritus of Family Business and Entrepreneurship and founder of the IMD Global Family Business Center. He teaches family business and entrepreneurship with a focus on generational and owner-related issues. He has lectured and conducted family business programs around the globe and has advised many leading global family businesses.

Prior to joining IMD, he was managing director of several companies which were part of his own family’s business. He has led the startup of several international businesses as well as managing a number of industrial manufacturing businesses in Australia and the US. He has also managed in international trading business in Switzerland.

Educated in Germany, France, and Switzerland, Schwass attended graduate studies at Technische Universität Berlin and Université de Fribourg where he obtained a Lic rer pol and a Dr rer pol.

His 2005 book, Wise Growth Strategies in Leading Family Businesses, has been translated into German, Spanish, Mandarin, and Japanese. He is the lead author of the 2010 book Wise Wealth, which was published in Mandarin three years later, and of the 2016 book Wise Family Business, Family Identity Steering Brand Success.

Schwass directed the Annual Distinguished Family Business Award for 10 years. He also spent 10 years as Executive Director of the Family Business Network (FBN) and served on their board until 2010.

Academic publications
Insight for Executives
Article
Der Familienbonus

Eigentümerfamilien sollten ihre Geschichte, ihre Werte und ihre langfristige vision offensiv in der Offentlishkeit kommunizieren. Damit stärken sie das Vertrauen von Mitarbeitern, Kunden und Invest...

Corporate Governance Marketing Family Business
1 October 2016
Article
Roots to keep family businesses honest

Family businesses by and large have built their business models by being anchored in their communities.

Family Business
20 August 2014
Article
Family ties don't have to be a liability

Sir, with reference to Andrew Hill's article, "A patriarch Murdoch should have emulated" (Business Life, April 1): it seems premature to predict unhappy consequences for family keeping ownership in...

Leadership Family Business
4 April 2014
Report
Private wealth and the family office: Different structures for different families

The impressive growth of private wealth on a global scale in recent decades has resulted in “The Forbes¦World’s Billionaires” list growing from some 140 billionaires when it was first launched 25 y...

Family Business
1 January 2013
Article
Erfolgsrezepte fĂĽr Familienbetriebe

Familienunternehmen werden weit verbreitet als Rückgrat der Wirtschaft angesehen: Sie schaffen Reichtum und¦Arbeitsplätze, sind lokal verwurzelt, verankert in ihrer Gemeinschaft – und sie existiere...

Family Business
18 November 2012
Article
Wise wealth: A longitudinal study on creating, managing and preserving private wealth

Family business and family office represents some of the most complex dynamics, organizations and relationships in the world, these entities are also some of the most successful.¦Introduction¦Never...

Family Business
1 June 2011
Article
Leverage family branding for competitive advantage

Family business brands are racing into the top ranks of the best global brands. According to the Interbrand Global Brands 2009, 26 of the top 100 were family businesses, of which 20 had moved up in...

Brand Management Family Business
1 May 2010
Article
What the financial crisis mean for family business education

Does the current financial crisis have an impact on educational programmes for families in business? Before attempting to find an answer to this question, you need to first look at the traditional ...

Organizational Learning Finance Family Business
1 August 2009
Article
Ces entreprises familiales créatrices de richesse

Le fondateur possède souvent une personnalité hors du commun, met en cause les conventions et perçoit des opportunités là où d'autres ne voient que des obstacles.

Family Business
3 December 2008
Report
Europe's family offices, private equity and venture capital

This study shows that family offices have become an integral part of the European private equity investor community and that a trend of increasing allocation to the asset is likely to continue.

Private Equity Family Business
22 November 2007
Article
Familien lassen Vermögen managen

Profis lösen zwischen den Generationen.

Family Business
5 November 2007
Report
Europe's family offices, private equity and venture capital

This study shows that family offices have become an integral part of the European private equity investor community and that a trend of increasing allocation to the asset is likely to continue.

Private Equity Family Business
1 January 2007
Report
Europe's family offices, private equity and venture capital

This study shows that family offices have become an integral part of the European private equity investor community and that a trend of increasing allocation to the asset is likely to continue.

Private Equity Family Business
1 January 2007
Article
Traditionen bewahren, aber auch weiterentwickeln
Family Business Stakeholder Management
1 July 2006
Article
La gestion des RH dans les entreprises familiales
Talent Management
1 June 2004
Family identity steering brand success
Wise Family Business
Programs