Signaling Value Through Gender Diversity: Evidence from Initial Coin Offerings
27 Pages Posted: 6 Nov 2020
Date Written: September 1, 2020
We analyze the effects of team gender diversity on initial coin offering (ICO) success measured by the total funding amount raised in the actual ICO and the long-term survival of the project. Using a database featuring 875 initial coin offerings between 2017 and 2019, we find that team gender diversity increases the total funding raised in the ICO. Moreover, when we separate team members into areas of expertise or roles in the project, we find that the presence of women in critical positions, such as being a founder or having financial or legal responsibilities, significantly reduces the likelihood of long-term coin failure. Our results are consistent with the notion that investors perceive women’s participation in leadership positions as a positive signal of desirable organizational practices that will translate into better performance. Our results are also consistent with the idea that having women, who abide by ethical values and are less prone to fraud, reduces the likelihood that informationally opaque ICOs turn out to be scams.
Keywords: Gender Diversity, Initial Coin Offerings, Blockchain, Entrepreneurship
JEL Classification: G3
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation