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Venture Capital, Private Equity and Earnings Quality

  • C. BEUSELINCK

    ()

  • M. DELOOF

    ()

  • S. MANIGART

    ()

This paper examines the quality of financial statements reported by private equity (PE) backed companies in the years around the initial PE investment. We study both pre- and postinvestment earnings characteristics of a unique hand-collected sample of 556 Belgian unlisted companies, receiving PE financing between 1985 & 1999, and a matched non-PE backed sample. We find strong evidence of upward earnings management in the PE backed sample prior to the investment year, consistent with the hypothesis that entrepreneurs which apply for PE manage earnings upward to catch PE investors’ interest. Further, PE backed companies show a significantly higher extent of earnings conservatism compared to matched companies from the investment year on, indicating a governance impact of PE investors on the financial reporting discipline. Finally, we find a marginally higher degree of earnings conservatism for companies receiving PE from non-government related investors compared to companies backed by government-related PE investors. We interpret this stricter financial reporting discipline as being the reflection of a more slack governance by government-related PE investors compared to non-government-related investors. Our results have implications for PE investors as well as for all other stakeholders of PE backed firms.

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File URL: http://wps-feb.ugent.be/Papers/wp_04_221.pdf
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Paper provided by Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration in its series Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium with number 04/221.

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Length: 47 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rug:rugwps:04/221
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Web page: http://www.ugent.be/eb

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  1. Lerner, Josh, 1999. "The Government as Venture Capitalist: The Long-Run Impact of the SBIR Program," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 72(3), pages 285-318, July.
  2. Teoh, Siew Hong & Welch, Ivo & Wong, T. J., 1998. "Earnings management and the underperformance of seasoned equity offerings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 63-99, October.
  3. DeFond, Mark L. & Jiambalvo, James, 1994. "Debt covenant violation and manipulation of accruals," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1-2), pages 145-176, January.
  4. Lerner, Josh, 1995. " Venture Capitalists and the Oversight of Private Firms," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(1), pages 301-18, March.
  5. Megginson, William L & Weiss, Kathleen A, 1991. " Venture Capitalist Certification in Initial Public Offerings," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 46(3), pages 879-903, July.
  6. Degeorge, Francois & Patel, Jayendu & Zeckhauser, Richard, 1999. "Earnings Management to Exceed Thresholds," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 72(1), pages 1-33, January.
  7. Mike Wright, 1998. "Venture Capital and Private Equity: A Review and Synthesis," Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(5&6), pages 521-570.
  8. Perry, Susan E. & Williams, Thomas H., 1994. "Earnings management preceding management buyout offers," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 157-179, September.
  9. Heckman, James J, 1979. "Sample Selection Bias as a Specification Error," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 153-61, January.
  10. Gompers, Paul A, 1995. " Optimal Investment, Monitoring, and the Staging of Venture Capital," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(5), pages 1461-89, December.
  11. Kaplan, Steven & Strömberg, Per Johan, 2000. "Financial Contracting Theory Meets The Real World: An Empirical Analysis Of Venture Capital Contracts," CEPR Discussion Papers 2421, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Macmillan, Ian C. & Zemann, Lauriann & Subbanarasimha, P. N., 1987. "Criteria distinguishing successful from unsuccessful ventures in the venture screening process," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 123-137.
  13. Hellmann, Thomas F. & Puri, Manju, 2000. "Venture Capital and the Professionalization of Start-up Firms: Empirical Evidence," Research Papers 1661, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  14. Sophie Manigart & Koen De Waele* & Mike Wright & Ken Robbie & Philippe Desbrières & Harry Sapienza & Amy Beekman, 2000. "Venture capitalists, investment appraisal and accounting information: a comparative study of the USA, UK, France, Belgium and Holland," European Financial Management, European Financial Management Association, vol. 6(3), pages 389-403.
  15. Leleux, Benoit & Surlemont, Bernard, 2003. "Public versus private venture capital: seeding or crowding out? A pan-European analysis," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 81-104, January.
  16. Basu, Sudipta, 1997. "The conservatism principle and the asymmetric timeliness of earnings," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 3-37, December.
  17. Sapienza, Harry J. & Manigart, Sophie & Vermeir, Wim, 1996. "Venture capitalist governance and value added in four countries," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 11(6), pages 439-469, November.
  18. Dechow, Patricia M., 1994. "Accounting earnings and cash flows as measures of firm performance : The role of accounting accruals," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 3-42, July.
  19. Steven N. Kaplan & Per Stromberg, 2001. "Venture Capitalists As Principals: Contracting, Screening, and Monitoring," NBER Working Papers 8202, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. 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 959-84.
  21. Burgstahler, David & Dichev, Ilia, 1997. "Earnings management to avoid earnings decreases and losses," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 99-126, December.
  22. Sahlman, William A., 1990. "The structure and governance of venture-capital organizations," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 473-521, October.
  23. Hall, John & Hofer, Charles W., 1993. "Venture capitalists' decision criteria in new venture evaluation," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 25-42, January.
  24. Jensen, Michael C. & Meckling, William H., 1976. "Theory of the firm: Managerial behavior, agency costs and ownership structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 305-360, October.
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