This paper examines the development of effective boards in venture capital (VC)-backed initial public offerings. It argues that VC-backed IPOs suffer from two sets of agency costs which are related to principal–agent and principal–principal relationships between the founders and members of the VC syndicate. Using a unique sample of 293 entrepreneurial IPOs in the UK it shows that VC syndicates invest in relatively more risky firms. VC-backed IPOs have more independent boards than IPOs with no VC involvement, with board independence being higher in syndicated VC-backed firms. These results are consistent with assumption that these governance factors are used to mitigate agency costs associated with VC involvement in IPO firms. We also find that in syndicated IPOs there is a higher equity presence of passive private equity firms investing alongside VC firms.
Small Business Economics – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 9, 2005
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