Best paper award for Klaas Mulier

The European Commission rewards professor Mulier the Prize for best policy-relevant paper in financial research for his paper with Olivier De Jonghe and Thorsten Beck on ‘Bank Sectoral Concentration and (Systemic) Risk’.

A link to the paper can be found here:

In the picture, prof. Mulier and De Jonghe receive their prize from Vladimir Sucha (Director-General Joint Research Center, EC) and John Berrigan (left) (Deputy Director-General, DG FISMA, EC).

Sustainability in equity crowdfunding

New paper by Silvio Vismara forthcoming in Technological Forecasting & Social Change.

Existing studies on the relationship between sustainability and crowdfunding are focused on campaigns that provide rewards for backers. Equity crowdfunding is substantially different in terms of motivations to invest as well as in size, horizon, and expectations of the investment. For the first time – using a sample of 345 initial equity offerings in United Kingdom platforms Crowdcube and Seedrs in the period 2014–2015 – this study provides evidence of the attractiveness of sustainability-oriented ventures in equity crowdfunding. Results show that, although sustainability orientation does not increase the chances of success or of engaging professional investors, it attracts a higher number of restricted investors. This evidence is interpreted considering institutional logic, whereas professionals follow a market logic, and restricted investors consider also a community logic.

Equity Crowdfunding, Shareholder Structures, and Firm Performance

New paper by Xavier Walthoff-Borm, Tom Vanacker & Veroniek Collewaert forthcoming in Corporate Governance: An International Review.

The paper provides a first-time glimpse into the post-campaign financial and innovative performance of equity-crowdfunded (ECF) and matched non-equity-crowdfunded (NECF) firms. We further investigate how direct and nominee shareholder structures in ECF firms are associated with firm performance. We find that ECF firms have 8.5 times higher failure rates than matched NECF firms. However, 3.4 times more ECF firms have patent applications than matched NECF firms. Within the group of ECF firms, we find that ECF firms financed through a nominee structure make smaller losses, while ECF firms financed through a direct shareholder structure have more new patent applications, including foreign patent applications.

Venture Capital Internationalization

In a new paper, David Devigne, Sophie Manigart, Tom Vanacker and Klaas Mulier review the extant literature on VC internationalization. We identify three major research streams within this literature, which revolve around the following questions: (1) which VC firms invest across borders and what countries do they target; (2) how do VC firms address liabilities of foreign investing; and (3) what are the real effects of international VC investments? We provide an overview of the contributions in these research streams, discuss the role of public policy, and suggest avenues for future research. 

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Local banking development and the use of debt financing by new firms

A new paper by Marc Deloof (University of Antwerp), Maurizio La Rocca (University of Calabria) and Tom Vanacker is forthcoming in Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice. In this paper, we investigate the effects of local banking development on the debt financing of new firms using a large sample of Italian firms. Controlling for potential endogeneity issues, we find that new firms are more likely to use bank debt and have higher leverage in provinces with more bank branches relative to population. However, it is important to account for bank heterogeneity. For instance, more foreign banks in a province actually reduce access to bank debt. Taken together, our study provides new and nuanced evidence on the role of local banking development for the debt financing of new firms. 

The Recent Financial Crisis, Start-up Financing, and Survival

A new paper by Marc Deloof (University of Antwerp) and Tom Vanacker is forthcoming in Journal of Business Finance and Accounting.  

Abstract: We investigate the effects of the recent financial crisis on start-up financing and survival using a data set that covers all Belgian new business registrations between 2006 and 2009. We find that bank debt is the single most important source of funding, even for start-ups founded during the crisis. However, start-ups founded in crisis years use less bank debt and have a higher likelihood to go bankrupt, even after controlling for their creditworthiness. These effects are stronger for start-ups that are more dependent on bank debt, such as start-ups founded in bank dependent industries and start-ups founded by entrepreneurs who are more likely financially constrained.

Equity Crowdfunding: First Resort or Last Resort?

A new paper by Xavier Walthoff-Borm, Armin Schwienbacher and Tom Vanacker is forthcoming in Journal of Business Venturing.

Abstract: Prior research has focused on the factors that affect funding success on equity crowdfunding platforms, but a detailed understanding of the factors that drive firms to search for equity crowdfunding in the first place is lacking. Drawing on the pecking order theory, we argue that firms list on equity crowdfunding platforms as a “last resort”—that is, when they lack internal funds and additional debt capacity. In line with the pecking order theory, the empirical evidence shows that firms listed on equity crowdfunding platforms are less profitable, more often have excessive debt levels, and have more intangible assets than matched firms not listed on these platforms. We discuss the implications for theory and practice.


Call for Papers – Special Issue of Small Business Economics

Recent developments in technology and regulation have led to new forms of entrepreneurial finance. New players and new ways to finance entrepreneurial firms have emerged or will emerge (Block et al., 2018). Some financial instruments like crowdfunding in its various forms have found their way into the entrepreneur’s toolbox and are on their way of getting mature, whilst others like initial coin offerings (ICOs) are only now becoming available but have a huge potential to shape the entrepreneurial finance landscape in the future. This special issue intends to increase our understanding of these new forms of entrepreneurial finance, with a particular focus on crowdfunding, blockchain technology and initial coin offerings (ICOs).

Submissions to the special issue should be sent electronically with the subject line “SBE Crowdfunding and blockchain Special Issue” to before October 31, 2018.

Call for papers (pdf)

Jeroen Neckebrouck wins Vlerick Researcher of the Year Award 2017

From left to right: Dean Marion Debruyne, Jeroen Neckebrouck and Research Manager Eva Cools

Alongside Jeroen, professors Sophie Manigart, Kristof Stouthuysen and Veroniek Collewaert also took part. Incidentally, Veroniek won the award last time,” says Research Manager Eva Cools. “The interuniversity jury were full of praise about the achievements of all the candidates. During the evaluation, not only do we assess how their achievements tie in with our research strategy, we also evaluate the balance between academic research, applied research and teaching innovation. In the end, they chose Jeroen Neckebrouck.”