Does the financial system affects early stage venture capital investments?

Improving access to finance is one of the key factors for increasing the number of innovative business start-ups with high growth potential. In this context, venture capitalists (VCs) have successfully dealt with the problems of financing innovative projects. The existing literature suggests that VC investments are strongly negatively affected by the characteristics of a bank-centered financial system and this negative influence could be one reason for different VC investment levels across the OECD countries. This paper is the first analysis that includes the relative size of the banking sector to produce evidence regarding whether, as is suggested in the predominant theoretical financial literature, the negative impact of a more bank-based financial system can withstand the empirical evidence. The fundamental argument supplied by Black and Gilson argues that banks are not able to duplicate the implicit contract regarding future control as a market-based system can. Additionally, a more market-based system provides more lucrative exits via IPOs. Whereas markets are complements for VC, banks are substitutes. The panel analysis conducted for 16 OECD countries supports this view.

Schröder, C. (2013): Does the financial system affects early stage venture capital investments?, Banks and Bank Systems, 8 (1), 23-35.

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