The CEO Beauty Premium

52 Pages Posted: 19 Aug 2020 Last revised: 6 Nov 2021

See all articles by Massimo G. Colombo

Massimo G. Colombo

Politecnico di Milano

Christian Fisch

University of Luxembourg - Interdisciplinary Centre for Security, Reliability and Trust (SnT)

Paul P. Momtaz

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Anderson School of Management; Technische Universität München (TUM) - TUM School of Management; University College London Center for Blockchain Technologies

Silvio Vismara

University of Bergamo

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: July 17, 2020

Abstract

We apply insights from research in social psychology and labor economics to the domain of entrepreneurial finance and investigate how founder chief executive officers’ (founder CEOs’) facial attractiveness influences firm valuation. Leveraging the novel context of initial coin offerings (ICOs), we document a pronounced founder CEO beauty premium, with a positive relationship between founder CEO attractiveness and firm valuation. We find only very limited evidence of stereotype-based evaluations, through the association of founder CEO attractiveness with latent traits such as competence, intelligence, likeability, or trustworthiness. Rather, attractiveness seems to bear economic value per se, especially in a context in which investors base their decisions on a limited information set. Indeed, attractiveness has a sustainable effect on post- ICO performance.

Keywords: CEO attractiveness, beauty premium, initial coin offering (ICO), token offering, entrepreneurial finance, firm valuation

Suggested Citation

Colombo, Massimo G. and Fisch, Christian and Momtaz, Paul P. and Vismara, Silvio, The CEO Beauty Premium (July 17, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3654561 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3654561

Massimo G. Colombo

Politecnico di Milano ( email )

Piazza Leonardo da Vinci, 32
20113 Milan
Italy

Christian Fisch

University of Luxembourg - Interdisciplinary Centre for Security, Reliability and Trust (SnT) ( email )

JFK Building
29, Avenue J.F Kennedy
Luxembourg, L-1885
Luxembourg

Paul P. Momtaz (Contact Author)

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Anderson School of Management ( email )

110 Westwood Plaza
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1481
United States

Technische Universität München (TUM) - TUM School of Management ( email )

Arcisstr. 21
Munich, 80333
Germany

University College London Center for Blockchain Technologies ( email )

UCL CBT UCL Computer Science
Malet Place London WC
London, London
United Kingdom

Silvio Vismara

University of Bergamo ( email )

Via dei Caniana
2
Bergamo, 24127
Italy
24127 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://https://scholar.google.it/citations?user=Sa8sBkoAAAAJ&hl=en

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