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Finis Imperii: Wie sich ein Konzern auflöst. Informationsströme und Verfügungsrechte im Flick-Konzern 1945/46

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In 1945/46, the Flick combine – one of the foremost German industrial enterprises – came under severe pressure due to strategic bombardment and Allied occupation. The breakdown of public infrastructure and the replacement of local managers led to an interruption of information flow between top management, executive boards, and operational units. The article argues that the organisational pattern the Flick combine was built on, i.e. a rather loose financial holding structure combined with strongly personalised competences and tight routines of information, was prone to disaster as soon as key players were forced to opt out. Coordination and control proved increasingly impossible since the combine's top personnel were arrested and could thus no longer make improvised decisions. The combine was left fragmented and disintegrated as both the principals and the agents of property rights were withdrawn. Subsequently, socialisation, denazification, and decartelisation put these very property rights into question. Ultimate dissolution was nigh.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2008-01-01

More about this publication?
  • Founded in 1903, Vierteljahrschrift für Sozial- und Wirtschaftsgeschichte is the oldest German periodical of social and economic history. The international, peer-reviewed journal features original articles in German, English, French and Italian.

    Today, VSWG is edited by Günther Schulz, Jörg Baten, Markus A. Denzel, Gerhard Fouquet and Hans Pohl and deals with all aspects of social history, social developments from the Middle Ages to today, as well as history of finance and economic history.

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