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Corporate venture capital and the balance of risks and rewards for portfolio companies


  • Maula, Markku V.J.
  • Autio, Erkko
  • Murray, Gordon C.


This paper contributes to the literature on corporate venture capital (CVC) by examining the management of CVC investments from the perspective of the investee firm. We focus on the trade-off between social interactions and relationship safeguards and examine their effects on the twin relationship outcomes of learning benefits and risks. The model is tested using data collected from CEOs of U.S. technology-based new firms receiving CVC funding. Complementarities between the investee firm and its CVC investor are positively related to the level of social interaction and negatively related to the use of different types of relationship safeguards by the investee firm. The use of safeguards is further negatively related to both realized relationship risks and social interaction. Social interaction is positively related to realized learning benefits. These findings highlight the fine balance that the investee firm has to strike between openness and self protection in a CVC relationship. Implications for future research and current practice are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Maula, Markku V.J. & Autio, Erkko & Murray, Gordon C., 2009. "Corporate venture capital and the balance of risks and rewards for portfolio companies," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 274-286, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbvent:v:24:y:2009:i:3:p:274-286

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jarillo, J. Carlos, 1989. "Entrepreneurship and growth: the strategic use of external resources," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 133-147, March.
    2. Kathleen R. Conner, 1995. "Obtaining Strategic Advantage from Being Imitated: When Can Encouraging "Clones" Pay?," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 41(2), pages 209-225, February.
    3. Paul Gompers & Josh Lerner, 2000. "The Determinants of Corporate Venture Capital Success: Organizational Structure, Incentives, and Complementarities," NBER Chapters,in: Concentrated Corporate Ownership, pages 17-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Katz, Michael L & Shapiro, Carl, 1986. "Technology Adoption in the Presence of Network Externalities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 822-841, August.
    5. 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, February.
    6. Sapienza, Harry J. & Parhankangas, Annaleena & Autio, Erkko, 2004. "Knowledge relatedness and post-spin-off growth," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 809-829, November.
    7. Robert M. Grant & Charles Baden-Fuller, 2004. "A Knowledge Accessing Theory of Strategic Alliances," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(1), pages 61-84, January.
    8. Hellmann, Thomas, 2002. "A theory of strategic venture investing," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 285-314, May.
    9. Africa AriƱo & Roberto Ragozzino & Jeffrey J. Reuer, 2008. "Alliance Dynamics for Entrepreneurial Firms," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(1), pages 147-168, January.
    10. Henrik Bresman & Julian Birkinshaw & Robert Nobel, 1999. "Knowledge Transfer in International Acquisitions," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 30(3), pages 439-462, September.
    11. Sapienza, Harry J., 1992. "When do venture capitalists add value?," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 9-27, January.
    12. Thomas Keil & Erkko Autio & Gerard George, 2008. "Corporate Venture Capital, Disembodied Experimentation and Capability Development," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(8), pages 1475-1505, December.
    13. Markku Maula & Erkko Autio & Gordon Murray, 2005. "Corporate Venture Capitalists and Independent Venture Capitalists: What do they know, Who do They Know and Should Entrepreneurs Care?," Venture Capital, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 7(1), pages 3-21, January.
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    15. Armstrong, J. Scott & Overton, Terry S., 1977. "Estimating Nonresponse Bias in Mail Surveys," MPRA Paper 81694, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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    Cited by:

    1. Fischer, Eileen & Reuber, A. Rebecca, 2011. "Social interaction via new social media: (How) can interactions on Twitter affect effectual thinking and behavior?," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 1-18, January.
    2. Wadhwa, Anu & Phelps, Corey & Kotha, Suresh, 2016. "Corporate venture capital portfolios and firm innovation," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 95-112.


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