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Venture Capital Exit Rights

  • Carsten Bienz
  • Uwe Walz

Theorists argue that exit rights can mitigate hold-up problems in venture capital. Using a hand-collected data-set of venture capital contracts from Germany we show that exit rights are included more frequently in venture capital contracts when a hold-up problem associated with the venture capitalist's exit decision is likely. Examples include drag-along and tag-along rights. Additionally, we find that almost all exit rights are allocated to the venture capitalist rather than to the entrepreneur. In addition, we show that besides the basic hold-up mechanism there are other mechanisms such as ex-ante bargaining power and the degree of pledgeable income that drive the allocation of exit rights.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Journal of Economics & Management Strategy.

Volume (Year): 19 (2010)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 1071-1116

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Handle: RePEc:bla:jemstr:v:19:y:2010:i:4:p:1071-1116
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  1. Aghion, Philippe & Bolton, P. & Tirole, J., 2004. "Exit Options in Corporate Finance: Liquidity versus Incentives," Scholarly Articles 12500289, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  2. Hubbard, Thomas N, 2001. "Contractual Form and Market Thickness in Trucking," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(2), pages 369-86, Summer.
  3. Philippe Aghion & Jean Tirole, 1994. "Formal and Real Authority in Organizations," Working papers 95-8, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Aghion, Philippe & Bolton, Patrick, 1992. "An Incomplete Contracts Approach to Financial Contracting," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 59(3), pages 473-94, July.
  5. Georg Nöldeke & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1992. "Option Contracts and Renegotiation - A Solution to the Hold-Up Problem," Discussion Paper Serie A 417, University of Bonn, Germany, revised Aug 1993.
  6. Bolton, Patrick & Scharfstein, David S, 1990. "A Theory of Predation Based on Agency Problems in Financial Contracting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 93-106, March.
  7. Preston McAfee, R., 1992. "Amicable divorce: Dissolving a partnership with simple mechanisms," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 266-293, April.
  8. Chan, Yuk-Shee & Siegel, Daniel R & Thakor, Anjan V, 1990. "Learning, Corporate Control and Performance Requirements in Venture Capital Contracts," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 31(2), pages 365-81, May.
  9. Hart, Oliver, 1995. "Firms, Contracts, and Financial Structure," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198288817.
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