Complex Ownership Structures and Corporate Valuations
Posted: 26 Jun 2008
Date Written: April 2008
The bulk of corporate governance theory examines the agency problems that arise from two extreme ownership structures: 100% small shareholders or one large, controlling owner combined with small shareholders. In this paper, we question the empirical validity of this dichotomy. In fact, one-third of publicly listed firms in Europe have multiple large owners, and the market value of firms with multiple blockholders differs from firms with a single large owner and from widely held firms. Moreover, the relationship between corporate valuations and the distribution of cash-flow rights across multiple large owners is consistent with the predictions of recent theoretical models.
Keywords: G32, G34
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