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What Determines the Growth Ambition of Dutch Early-Stage Entrepreneurs?

  • Ingrid Verheul
  • Linda van Mil

This paper investigates the determinants of the ambition to grow among Dutch early-stage entrepreneurs (nascents and young business owners). We use Adult Population Survey data of the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) for the Netherlands. Merging cross-sectional data of the years 2002 to 2007, we arrive at a sample of 409 nascents and 336 young business owners. Growth ambition is measured by asking the respondent which statement fits him or her best: (1) I want my company to be as large as possible, or (2) I want a size I can manage myself or with a few key employees. We find that nascent entrepreneurs and young business owners are equally likely to strive after business growth. For nascent entrepreneurs we find that fear of failure and entrepreneurial self-efficacy are important factors explaining growth ambition. Starting a business because of perceiving and exploiting a business opportunity (as opposed to starting a business out of necessity) is an important driver of growth ambition for both nascents and young business owners, although it is more important for nascents.

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Paper provided by EIM Business and Policy Research in its series Scales Research Reports with number H200811.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: 05 Sep 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:eim:papers:h200811
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  1. Du Rietz, Anita & Henrekson, Magnus, 2000. " Testing the Female Underperformance Hypothesis," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 1-10, February.
  2. repec:dgr:uvatin:20080035 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Paul Reynolds & Niels Bosma & Erkko Autio & Steve Hunt & Natalie De Bono & Isabel Servais & Paloma Lopez-Garcia & Nancy Chin, 2005. "Global Entrepreneurship Monitor: Data Collection Design and Implementation 1998–2003," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 24(3), pages 205-231, 02.
  4. Ron Kemp & R Hakkert, 2006. "An Ambition to Grow," Scales Research Reports H200603, EIM Business and Policy Research.
  5. Roy Thurik & Ingrid Verheul & Isabel Grilo & Reena Bhola, 2006. "Explaining engagement levels of opportunity and necessity entrepreneurs," Scales Research Reports H200610, EIM Business and Policy Research.
  6. Gavin Cassar, 2007. "Money, money, money? A longitudinal investigation of entrepreneur career reasons, growth preferences and achieved growth," Entrepreneurship & Regional Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(1), pages 89-107, January.
  7. Van Praag, C Mirjam & Van Ophem, Hans, 1995. "Determinants of Willingness and Opportunity to Start as an Entrepreneur," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(4), pages 513-40.
  8. Polona Tominc & Miroslav Rebernik, 2007. "Growth Aspirations and Cultural Support for Entrepreneurship: A Comparison of Post-Socialist Countries," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 28(2), pages 239-255, March.
  9. Paul D. Reynolds & Nancy M. Carter & William B. Gartner & Patricia G. Greene, 2004. "The Prevalence of Nascent Entrepreneurs in the United States: Evidence from the Panel Study of Entrepreneurial Dynamics," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 23(4), pages 263-284, November.
  10. Ingrid Verheul & Lorraine Uhlaner & Roy Thurik, 2004. "Business Accomplishments, Gender And Entrepreneurial Self-Image," Papers on Entrepreneurship, Growth and Public Policy 2004-10, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Entrepreneurship, Growth and Public Policy Group.
  11. Levesque, Moren & Minniti, Maria, 2006. "The effect of aging on entrepreneurial behavior," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 177-194, March.
  12. Cassar, Gavin, 2006. "Entrepreneur opportunity costs and intended venture growth," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 21(5), pages 610-632, September.
  13. Dutta, Dev K. & Thornhill, Stewart, 2008. "The evolution of growth intentions: Toward a cognition-based model," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 307-332, May.
  14. Jolanda Hessels & Kashifa Suddle & Maaike Mooibroek, 2008. "Global Entrepreneurship Monitor 2007 The Netherlands," Scales Research Reports A200805, EIM Business and Policy Research.
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