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Title: Corporate governance, professionalisation and performance of IPO firms : the role of founders and venture capitalists
Author: Thiess, Rolf Christian
ISNI:       0000 0004 2719 2444
Awarding Body: University of Bradford
Current Institution: University of Bradford
Date of Award: 2010
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Combining agency theory and the resource-dependence perspective as well as signalling theory, this thesis examines the role venture capitalists (VCs) and founders play with respect to both structural board characteristics and board capital in terms of experience and prestige and whether these are linked to performance. It claims that VCs and founders shape the governance system of the firms going public and are influential in the professionalisation of the ventures especially in terms of human and social capital of its board of directors. It also argues that the board of directors represents a signal of firm quality in the initial public offering (IPO) market and should thus be linked to performance. Similarly, according to the venture capital certification hypothesis, being funded by VCs signals a firm's quality and potential. In order to assess these claims, this thesis employs a unique sample of matched venturecapital- backed and non-venture-capital-backed entrepreneurial IPOs that floated either on the London Stock Exchange's Official List or the Alternative Investment Market (AIM). Extending previous research this thesis employs more fine-grained measures and introduces new conceptually relevant variables in the analysis. The findings indicate that VCs and founders are influential in shaping corporate governance of IPO-stage ventures both from an agency and resource-provision perspective. Findings from the examination of governance and professionalisation characteristics with respect to IPO short-run performance (underpricing) indicate that it may the involvement of prestigious auditors that signal firm quality while a founder bias discount seems to exist. While evidence is found that VC involvement (and to a lesser extent director/board characteristics) is related to post-IPO market performance, this seems to depend on the time period following the IPO examined, whereas auditor prestige shows a positive association in all of these time periods.
Supervisor: Filatotchev, Igor. ; Ward, Damian. Sponsor: Bradford University School of Management
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Corporate governance ; Venture capital ; Performance ; Initial public offerings (IPOs) ; Venture capitalists