The Imprinting of Founders’ Human Capital on Entrepreneurial Venture Growth: Evidence from New Technology-Based Firms

Posted: 24 Jun 2014

See all articles by Luca Grilli

Luca Grilli

Polytechnic University of Milan - Department of Management, Economics and Industrial Engineering

Paul H. Jensen

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research

Samuele Murtinu

Utrecht University - School of Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 11, 2014

Abstract

This paper tests the presence of an ‘entrepreneurial imprinting effect’ of founders’ human capital on entrepreneurial ventures’ sales growth performance. More specifically, we disentangle the effect of the stock of human capital possessed at foundation from the potential injections and losses of human capital due to exit of founders and/or addition of new owner-managers in the entrepreneurial team over time. Our analysis is based on a panel dataset composed of 338 Italian new technology-based firms (NTBFs) observed from 1995 (or since their foundation) to 2008 (or until their exit from the dataset). We consider the effects of several dimensions of entrepreneurial human capital and estimate Gibrat law-type dynamic panel data models using a GMM-system estimator to control for endogeneity. Overall, our results point to a positive and significant presence of an ‘entrepreneurial imprinting effect’ exerted by founders’ specific work experience on venture growth, which is robust to a series of controls. We also examine the boundary conditions/moderating factors of the entrepreneurial imprinting effect as they relate to firm age, turbulence of the founding team and functional heterogeneity of the founding team’s specific work experience.

Keywords: entrepreneurial ventures, imprinting effect, entrepreneurs’ human capital, firm growth, new technology-based firms

JEL Classification: L26, M13, L25

Suggested Citation

Grilli, Luca and Jensen, Paul H. and Murtinu, Samuele, The Imprinting of Founders’ Human Capital on Entrepreneurial Venture Growth: Evidence from New Technology-Based Firms (June 11, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2456721 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2456721

Luca Grilli

Polytechnic University of Milan - Department of Management, Economics and Industrial Engineering ( email )

Via Lambruschini 4C - building 26/A
Milano, 20156
Italy

Paul H. Jensen

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research ( email )

Level 5, FBE Building, 111 Barry Street
Parkville, Victoria 3010
Australia

Samuele Murtinu (Contact Author)

Utrecht University - School of Economics ( email )

Kriekenpitplein 21-22
Adam Smith Building
Utrecht, +31 30 253 7373 3584 EC
Netherlands

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