Résumé : This paper uses a very large sample of French SMEs to study growth of family owned firms. Firms range from total-family to minority control. The estimated relationship accounts for firm characteristics of size and, age, sector, and financial solvency. The results show that firms with greater family control are prone to exhibit lower rates of sales growth than feasible, given financial performance. Because firm growth is limited not by financing constraints but by family-related attitudes, increasing firm growth requires policies that shape incentives in small family businesses.