Abstract: Networking and Corporate Governance in the Regional Swedish Daily Newspaper Industry

Christoffer Rydland

Abstract

This paper discusses an organizational innovation: a rather secretive network of CEOs in the Swedish regional daily newspaper industry. It was formed in 1956 and closed down in 2008. The network was normally composed of twelve CEOs at a time and membership in the group was personal. The group developed a very detailed set of benchmarking numbers: the entire series is complete, 1956-2008. The paper categorizes some of the functions of this group and how these functions evolved over time. In particular, it discusses how this group compares to other forms of cooperation, such as cartels, industrial associations, and business groups. The paper is based on the minutes from the group as well as some interviews. Unlike board meeting minutes, the group's minutes were not intended to be disclosed. They contain more discussions and probably give a better picture of what actors in this industry really thought at the time. There are some indications that the group formed an inner circle in business associations.