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The Journal of Technology Transfer

, Volume 35, Issue 6, pp 567–584 | Cite as

Agency and similarity effects and the VC’s attitude towards academic spin-out investing

  • Mirjam Knockaert
  • Mike Wright
  • Bart Clarysse
  • Andy Lockett
Article

Abstract

Our research seeks to develop understanding of the factors explaining venture capital investment managers’ attitudes towards investment in the unique context of academic spin-outs. We provide a novel integration of both VC fund characteristics and investment managers’ human capital characteristics with a unique hand-collected dataset of 68 early stage VC investment managers in Europe. Attitudes toward academic spin-out investing are positively affected by the presence of public sector capital and by investment managers who are more intensively involved with the entrepreneur. Specific human capital in investment managers who had worked in an academic environment is more likely associated with investment in academic spin-outs. In terms of general human capital, financial experience is positively related while entrepreneurial experience is negatively associated with investment attitude towards academic spin-outs. There may be a need to facilitate the attraction of people from industry and investment banking into public VC funds in particular.

Keywords

Venture capital Academic spin-out Human capital Agency theory 

JEL Classification

G24 L26 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mirjam Knockaert
    • 1
    • 2
  • Mike Wright
    • 1
    • 3
  • Bart Clarysse
    • 1
    • 4
  • Andy Lockett
    • 5
  1. 1.University of GhentGhentBelgium
  2. 2.Centre for EntrepreneurshipUniversity of OsloBlindern, OsloNorway
  3. 3.Centre for Management Buy-out ResearchNottingham University Business SchoolNottinghamUK
  4. 4.Imperial College London Business SchoolLondonUK
  5. 5.University of Nottingham, Nottingham University Business SchoolNottinghamUK

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