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Who Becomes the Winner? Effects of Venture Capital on Firms’ Innovative Incentives - A Theoretical Investigation

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  • Matthew Beacham
  • Bipasa Datta

Abstract

It is well established in the empirical literature that venture capital (VC) plays an important role in the promotion of innovation at industry level and the professionalisation of firms at micro-level. Whilst the VC-to-success link has been well explored, the mechanism behind how and why certain venture-backed firms are apparently more successful is an important question that has been largely ignored within the majority of the literature. In this paper, we fill this gap by specifically analysing firms' pre- and post-VC investment decisions. By considering a two period, multi-stage game, we analyse whether VC spurs innovation (i) directly after being granted; (ii) indirectly by incentivising firms to increase initial research efforts to increase their chances of receiving VC funding and its associated benefits; or (iii) a combination of both. Our results show that VC has both direct and indirect effects on firms' innovation decisions regardless of whether the firm is successful in securing VC funding or not. Furthermore, we find that the commonly held assertion that venture capital spurs success is too simplistic: whilst venture capital spurs innovation amongst the lucky, chosen few, it unambiguously suppresses innovation of non-VC-backed firms, a result that has been overlooked in the empirical literature. The issue of `who becomes the winner' in the final product market however is ultimately dependent upon the extent of heterogeneity amongst firms. Further, we show that VC funding, equity stake and value-adding services all have impacts upon firms' incentives to invest in the first stage.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of York in its series Discussion Papers with number 13/33.

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Date of creation: Dec 2013
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Handle: RePEc:yor:yorken:13/33

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Keywords: Venture capital; innovation; firm heterogeneity; investment and effort; strategic substitutes and complements;

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  1. Michael Peneder, 2009. "The impact of venture capital on innovation behaviour and firm growth," Venture Capital, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(2), pages 83-107, November.
  2. Manju Puri & Rebecca Zarutskie, 2008. "On the Lifecycle Dynamics of Venture-Capital- and Non-Venture-Capital-Financed Firms," NBER Working Papers 14250, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Thomas Hellmann & Manju Puri, 2002. "Venture Capital and the Professionalization of Start-Up Firms: Empirical Evidence," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 169-197, 02.
  4. Engel, Dirk & Keilbach, Max, 2007. "Firm-level implications of early stage venture capital investment -- An empirical investigation," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 150-167, March.
  5. Mann, Ronald J. & Sager, Thomas W., 2007. "Patents, venture capital, and software start-ups," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 193-208, March.
  6. Steven N. Kaplan & Berk A. Sensoy & Per Strömberg, 2009. "Should Investors Bet on the Jockey or the Horse? Evidence from the Evolution of Firms from Early Business Plans to Public Companies," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(1), pages 75-115, 02.
  7. Faria, Ana Paula & Barbosa, Natália, 2014. "Does venture capital really foster innovation?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 122(2), pages 129-131.
  8. Hirukawa, Masayuki & Ueda, Masako, 2008. "Venture Capital and Innovation: Which is First?," CEPR Discussion Papers 7090, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Marco Da Rin & María Fabiana Penas, 2007. "The Effect of Venture Capital on Innovation Strategies," NBER Working Papers 13636, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Bottazzi, L. & Da Rin, M. & Hellmann, T., 2008. "Who are the active investors? Evidence from venture capital," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-305977, Tilburg University.
  11. Stefano Caselli & Stefano Gatti & Francesco Perrini, 2009. "Are Venture Capitalists a Catalyst for Innovation?," European Financial Management, European Financial Management Association, vol. 15(1), pages 92-111.
  12. Thomas Chemmanur & Karthik Krishnan & Debarshi Nandy, 2008. "How Does Venture Capital Financing Improve Efficiency in Private Firms? A Look Beneath the Surface," Working Papers 08-16, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  13. Hirukawa, Masayuki & Ueda, Masako, 2008. "Venture Capital and Industrial ''Innovation''," CEPR Discussion Papers 7089, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Gompers, Paul A, 1995. " Optimal Investment, Monitoring, and the Staging of Venture Capital," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(5), pages 1461-89, December.
  15. Alexander Popov & Peter Roosenboom, 2012. "Venture capital and patented innovation: evidence from Europe," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 27(71), pages 447-482, 07.
  16. Samuel Kortum & Josh Lerner, 2000. "Assessing the Contribution of Venture Capital to Innovation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 31(4), pages 674-692, Winter.
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