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Stage Financing and the Role of Convertible Securities

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  • Francesca Cornelli
  • Oved Yosha

Abstract

Venture capital financing is characterized by extensive use of convertible securities and stage financing. In a model where a venture capitalist provides staged financing for a project, we illustrate an advantage of convertible debt (or warrants) over a mixture of debt and equity. Essentially, when the venture capitalist retains the option to abandon the project, the entrepreneur has an incentive to engage in window dressing and bias positively the short-term performance of the project, reducing the probability that it will be liquidated. An appropriately designed convertible security prevents such behaviour because window dressing also increases the probability that the venture capitalist will exercise the conversion option becoming the owner of a substantial fraction of the project's equity. Copyright 2003, Wiley-Blackwell.

Suggested Citation

  • Francesca Cornelli & Oved Yosha, 2003. "Stage Financing and the Role of Convertible Securities," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(1), pages 1-32.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:restud:v:70:y:2003:i:1:p:1-32
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/1467-937X.00235
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