The Medieval Super-Companies: A Study of the Peruzzi Company of Florence

Front Cover
Cambridge University Press, May 9, 2002 - Business & Economics - 304 pages
From this analysis, the author offers a radical reassessment of the nature and role of these extraordinary organizations. He establishes that although they engaged in all forms of commerce in substantial volume, what made them exceptional was commodity trading, especially in grain, which they conducted on a heroic scale. It was this activity that required heavy capital, sophisticated organization, and an international network. But the author also exposes the limitations of their financial power and explodes the myth that their downfall was caused mainly by bad loans to Edward III to finance his invasions of France. This book is much more than a business history. It presents the operations of these companies in the context of the swiftly moving political, military, and economic developments in Florence, the Mediterranean, and western Europe during a tumultuous period.
 

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Contents

List of tables figures and map page
1
The company and the family
11
The nature of the business
38
The structure of the Peruzzi Company
76
The accounting of the Peruzzi Company
101
The prosperous years 13001324
127
The decline begins 13251335
156
The critical years 13351340
184
The aftermath
230
Conclusions
243
Appendixes
251
Al Detail of others balances at July 1 1335
256
Peruzzi Company and shareholder data
259
A6 Changes in company loan balances
265
Exchange rate trends
266
Bibliography
272

The collapse 13401343
212
Total number of Peruzzi employees 133543
223

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