Rockefellers, Windsors, Toyodas – THE 50 MOST DANGEROUS FAMILIES IN THE WORLD by Hannu Sokala published this week!

We are thrilled to let you know that THE 50 MOST DANGEROUS FAMILIES IN THE WORLD by Hannu Sokala will be published in Finland this week by Otava/Nemo!

Many of the most important big companies around the world are still owned or controlled by their founding families. However, despite wielding significant economic and political power, these families would rather like to remain away from the limelight. What kinds of challenges might these families present for equality and democracy?

In THE 50 MOST DANGEROUS FAMILIES IN THE WORLD, investigative journalist Hannu Sokala presents a unique insight into the possessions of 50 different families all over the world. The reader might already be familiar with the Rockefellers, the al-Sauds, the Windsors and the Toyodas, but many others, including the Quandts, the Safras, and the al-Nahyans, remain mostly unknown. Hannu Sokala’s book reads like a thriller novel and reveals the twists and turns in the history of these absurdly wealthy and powerful families.

THE 50 MOST DANGEROUS FAMILIES IN THE WORLD is an independent sequel to THE 50 MOST DANGEROUS COMPANIES IN THE WORLD, written by Hannu Sokala and Juha-Pekka Raeste and originally published in Finland in 2021, which has been sold to 8 territories!

As reading materials, we now have the full Finnish manuscript and English sample chapters available.

Download materials for THE 50 MOST DANGEROUS FAMILIES IN THE WORLD here!

The 50 Most Dangerous Families in the World

Hannu Sokala

They like to stay in the shadows. Who are the families that wield the most power in the world?

Worse than the Roys
Did you think the Roy family in Succession was distressing? Truth is stranger than fiction. Read about the real-life Roys, the Murdoch family.

How did the BMW owners get rich?
The main owner of the German automaker are the Quandt family. They made their first fortune by supplying the German army with uniforms during World War 1. In the 1930s, they started to collaborate with the Nazis.

What is the greatest ever fortune squandered?
Cornelius Vanderbilt amassed the largest American fortune in the world in the 19th Century. His offspring demolished their fortune by building grand mansions and throwing opulent jet-set parties.

The stories of the families in this book contain larger-than-life characters, unbelievable plots, and numerous conflicts, tragedies, and successes. This non-fiction book by the experienced business journalist Hannu Sokala offers a comprehensive and surprising perspective on the world’s most important – and dangerous families.

Otava/Nemo, 2023, 428 pp.

English sample chapters
Table of contents

FINLAND: Otava/Nemo (orig.)

About author

Hannu Sokala

Hannu Sokala has worked as a financial journalist for over 30 years, starting at the daily newspaper Helsingin Sanomat and, lastly, as an investigative reporter for the Finnish National Broadcasting Company YLE. He enjoys digging into the biggest banks and corporations and the most powerful industries.

Hannu’s latest books (The 50 Most Dangerous Companies in the World, with co-author Juha-Pekka Raeste, and The 50 Most Dangerous Families in the World) are bestsellers in Finland.

Hannu resides with his wife, daughter, and two huskies in Tuusula, a 40-minute train ride north of Helsinki. The four seasons start at the front door of their house, which is surrounded by big trees.

In addition to books, Hannu is into music (he is only one short of seeing 30 Bruce Springsteen concerts; his most recent big favourite is the amazing Welsh artist Ren), television (do not get him started, but everything by Stephen Poliakoff and Dennis Potter, in addition to Heimat, Seinfeld, The Sopranos, Gomorrah, Lost, Better Call Saul, etc.), and movies (just don’t).

His ambition is to write nonfiction in a way that inspires people to get interested in the big questions about money, economics, and democracy.


2023, General Nonfiction

The 50 Most Dangerous Families in the World

Hannu Sokala