Debt Financing, Survival, and Growth of Start-Up Firms
48 Pages Posted: 9 Oct 2014 Last revised: 26 Nov 2017
Date Written: October 31, 2017
We analyze the relation between different forms of debt financing at the firm’s start-up and subsequent firm outcomes. We distinguish between business debt, obtained in the name of the firm, and personal debt, obtained in the name of the firm’s owner and used to finance the start-up firm. Start-up firms with better performance prospects are more likely to use debt and, in particular, business debt. Compared to all-equity firms, firms using debt at the initial year of operations are significantly more likely to survive and achieve higher levels of revenue three years after the firm’s start-up. However, results hold for business debt only. Debt obtained in the name of the firm is associated with longer survival time and higher revenues, while debt obtained in the name of the firm’s owner has no effect on survival time and is associated with lower revenues.
Keywords: entrepreneurial finance, banks’ selection and monitoring, credit financing, financial intermediation, Kauffman, KFS, start-up, growth, survival
JEL Classification: G21, G32, J71, L11, M13
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