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Entrepreneurial Spawning: Public Corporations and the Genesis of New Ventures, 1986-1999

Author

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  • Paul Gompers
  • Josh Lerner
  • David Scharfstein

Abstract

This paper examines the factors that lead to the creation of venture capital backed start-ups, a process we term entrepreneurial spawning.' We contrast two alternative views of the spawning process. In one view, employees of established firms are trained and conditioned to be entrepreneurs by being exposed to the entrepreneurial process and by working in a network of entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. Alternatively, individuals become entrepreneurs because the large bureaucratic companies for which they work are reluctant to fund their entrepreneurial ideas. Controlling for a firm's size, patent portfolio and industry, we find that the most prolific spawning firms were public companies located in Silicon Valley and Massachusetts that were themselves once venture capital backed. Less diversified firms are also more likely to spawn new firms. Spawning levels for these firms rise as their sales growth declines. Firms based in Silicon Valley and Massachusetts and originally backed by venture capitalists are more likely to spawn firms only peripherally related to their core businesses. Overall, these findings appear to be more consistent with the view that entrepreneurial learning and networks are important factors in the creation of venture capital backed firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Paul Gompers & Josh Lerner & David Scharfstein, 2003. "Entrepreneurial Spawning: Public Corporations and the Genesis of New Ventures, 1986-1999," NBER Working Papers 9816, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:9816
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Josh Lerner, 1996. "The Government as Venture Capitalist: The Long-Run Effects of the SBIR Program," NBER Working Papers 5753, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Berger, Allen N. & Miller, Nathan H. & Petersen, Mitchell A. & Rajan, Raghuram G. & Stein, Jeremy C., 2005. "Does function follow organizational form? Evidence from the lending practices of large and small banks," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 237-269, May.
    3. Hall, B. & Jaffe, A. & Trajtenberg, M., 2001. "The NBER Patent Citations Data File: Lessons, Insights and Methodological Tools," Papers 2001-29, Tel Aviv.
    4. Mike Wright & Harry J. Sapienza (ed.), 2003. "Venture Capital," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, volume 0, number 2988.
    5. Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg, 2005. "Patents, Citations, and Innovations: A Window on the Knowledge Economy," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026260065x, January.
    6. Steven N. Kaplan & Per Strömberg, 2003. "Financial Contracting Theory Meets the Real World: An Empirical Analysis of Venture Capital Contracts," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 281-315.
    7. Mark L. Mitchell & Kenneth Lehn, 1990. "Do Bad Bidders Become Good Targets?," Journal of Applied Corporate Finance, Morgan Stanley, vol. 3(2), pages 60-69.
    8. David S. Scharfstein & Jeremy C. Stein, 2000. "The Dark Side of Internal Capital Markets: Divisional Rent-Seeking and Inefficient Investment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(6), pages 2537-2564, December.
    9. Holmes, Thomas J & Schmitz, James A, Jr, 1990. "A Theory of Entrepreneurship and Its Application to the Study of Business Transfers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(2), pages 265-294, April.
    10. Hellmann, Thomas & Puri, Manju, 2000. "The Interaction between Product Market and Financing Strategy: The Role of Venture Capital," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 13(4), pages 959-984.
    11. Thomas Hellmann, 2007. "When Do Employees Become Entrepreneurs?," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 53(6), pages 919-933, June.
    12. Gromb, Denis & Scharfstein, David, 2002. "Entrepreneurship in Equilibrium," CEPR Discussion Papers 3652, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    13. Mitchell, Mark L & Lehn, Kenneth, 1990. "Do Bad Bidders Become Good Targets?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(2), pages 372-398, April.
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    16. Antoinette Schoar, 2002. "Effects of Corporate Diversification on Productivity," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(6), pages 2379-2403, December.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Toole, Andrew A. & Czarnitzki, Dirk, 2007. "Biomedical academic entrepreneurship through the SBIR program," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 63(4), pages 716-738, August.
    2. Cantner, Uwe & Graf, Holger, 2006. "The network of innovators in Jena: An application of social network analysis," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 463-480, May.
    3. Junfu Zhang, 2011. "The advantage of experienced start-up founders in venture capital acquisition: evidence from serial entrepreneurs," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 36(2), pages 187-208, February.
    4. Mihir A. Desai & William M. Gentry, 2004. "The Character and Determinants of Corporate Capital Gains," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 18, pages 1-36 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Paola Giuri & Myriam Mariani & Stefano Brusoni & Gustavo Crespi & Dominique Francoz & Alfonso Gambardella & Walter Garcia-Fontes & Aldo Geuna & Raul Gonzales & Dietmar Harhoff & Karin Hoisl & Christia, 2005. "Everything you Always Wanted to Know about Inventors (but Never Asked): Evidence from the PatVal-EU Survey," LEM Papers Series 2005/20, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    6. Gil Avnimelech & Morris Teubal, 2004. "Strength of Market Forces and the Successful Emergence of Israel's Venture Capital Industry. Insights from a Policy-Led Case of Structural Change," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 55(6), pages 1265-1300.
    7. Heike Mayer, 2013. "Firm Building and Entrepreneurship in Second-Tier High-Tech Regions," European Planning Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(9), pages 1392-1417, September.
    8. repec:wsi:jdexxx:v:10:y:2005:i:03:n:s1084946705000203 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Alessandro Rosiello & Morris Teubal & Gil Avnimelech, 2008. "Towards the Framing of Venture Capital Policies: a Systems-Evolutionary Perspective with Particular Reference to the UK/Scotland and Israeli Experiences," ICER Working Papers 21-2008, ICER - International Centre for Economic Research.
    10. Popov, Alexander & Roosenboom, Peter, 2009. "On the real effects of private equity investment: evidence from new business creation," Working Paper Series 1078, European Central Bank.
    11. Popov, Alexander, 2009. "Does Finance Bolster Superstar Companies? Banks, Venture Capital, and Firm Size in Local U.S. Markets," Working Paper Series 1121, European Central Bank.
    12. Baltzopoulos, Apostolos, 2009. "The Firm and the Region as Breeding Grounds for Entrepreneurs," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 189, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G2 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services
    • L2 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior

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