How human capital interacts with the early development of academic spin-offs

Article

Abstract

This paper focuses on venture team characteristics with respect to human capital dimensions in early stage ventures emerging from academic research (institutions). Three major groups have been investigated: founders, top managers and directors. Data was obtained using personal interviews with 185 product-oriented academic spin-offs in nine European countries, including those of 17 failures. The results show a significant positive—but diminishing—impact of team heterogeneity on venture success, as well as a positive impact from legal expertise within the board of directors. At management level, the results further indicate that larger management team are better equipped to face the challenges in academic spin-offs. Furthermore, the added value of serial entrepreneurs is questioned, since they seem to negatively impact a spin-off’s survival chances. Several implications are addressed, dealing with an appropriate team composition (on the levels of both top management and the board of directors) as well as the importance of paying attention to team development.

Keywords

Academic spin-offs Human capital Team characteristics Early development Failure Survival 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sven H. De Cleyn
    • 1
  • Johan Braet
    • 1
  • Magnus Klofsten
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of Applied EconomicsUniversity of AntwerpAntwerpBelgium
  2. 2.Department of Management and EconomicsLinköping UniversityLinköpingSweden

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