Reputation, VC funding, and innovation: Evidence from the UK Micro and Nanotechnology sector

Zhang, Chunxiang (2013) Reputation, VC funding, and innovation: Evidence from the UK Micro and Nanotechnology sector, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Direzione aziendale, 25 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/5742.
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Startups’ contributions on economic growth have been widely realized. However, the funding gap is often a problem limiting startups’ development. To some extent, VC can be a means to solve this problem. VC is one of the optimal financial intermediaries for startups. Two streams of VC studies are focused in this dissertation: the criteria used by venture capitalists to evaluate startups and the effect of VC on innovation. First, although many criteria have been analyzed, the empirical assessment of the effect of startup reputation on VC funding has not been investigated. However, reputation is usually positively related with firm performance, which may affect VC funding. By analyzing reputation from the generalized visibility dimension and the generalized favorability dimension using a sample of 200 startups founded from 1995 operating in the UK MNT sector, we show that both the two dimensions of reputation have positive influence on the likelihood of receiving VC funding. We also find that management team heterogeneity positively influence the likelihood of receiving VC funding. Second, studies investigating the effect of venture capital on innovation have frequently resorted to patent data. However, innovation is a process leading from invention to successful commercialization, and while patents capture the upstream side of innovative performance, they poorly describe its downstream one. By reflecting the introduction of new products or services trademarks can complete the picture, but empirical studies on trademarking in startups are rare. Analyzing a sample of 192 startups founded from 1996 operating in the UK MNT sector, we find that VC funding has positive effect on the propensity to register trademarks, as well as on the number and breadth of trademarks.


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