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Survival in the French Wine Industry: can cooperatives cope better

Abstract : This paper examines the ability of cooperatives to survive after crisis, during a turbulent environment. We focus on the French wine companies. The French industry knew a lot of shifts and mutations from decades, forcing companies to evolve and undergo irreversible transformations for achieving a better fit to their environment. We suppose - following the well-known adage - that is not the fittest, but the most adaptable who will survive. Thus, while most studies on the topic try to highlight relevant strategies to create value and perform in these changing conditions, we reexamine the adaptability of French wineries to their environment through an original approach: survival analysis. Traditional theories suggest that cooperatives are inefficient and consequently are prone to failure, but recent literature suggest they could be more resilient and are actually a modern form of organization, able to balance economic constraints and new societal expectations (Núñez-Nickel and Moyano-Fuentes, 2004; Iliopoulos, 2015). Can cooperatives cope better? We found that cooperatives survive longer than corporations. This result is robust to semi-parametric and parametric models, even when we control for different causes of demise. These last decades, the long term success and survival of a firm in the wine industry have been described in the literature as depending mainly on a firm’s ability to become market oriented, and to engage export and intangibles efforts (Simon-Elorz et al., 2015). However, cooperatives are often less engaged in intangible investments and export effort than corporations, because of their member-orientation (Hanf and Schweickert, 2014). We found that the main determinants of survival are different for cooperatives and corporations. So, why cooperative cope better? We suggest that cooperatives are able to absorb a part of the impact of the wine crisis at the expense of their members, explaining their better survival rate.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, June 12, 2019 - 3:46:29 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, November 3, 2021 - 7:41:50 AM


  • HAL Id : hal-02153888, version 1


Justine Valette, Paul Amadieu, Patrick Sentis. Survival in the French Wine Industry: can cooperatives cope better. 5th AAIG International Conference of Governance (Association Académique Internationale de Gouvernance), May 2016, Montpellier, France. ⟨hal-02153888⟩



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