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La dimensione iniziale delle nuove imprese ad alta tecnologia: il ruolo del capitale umano e delle fonti di finanziamento

Luca Grilli (), Marco Delmastro () and Massimo G. Colombo

ECONOMIA E POLITICA INDUSTRIALE, 2003, vol. 2003/119, issue 119

Abstract: La dimensione iniziale delle nuove imprese ad alta tecnologia: il ruolo del capitale umano e delle fonti di finanziamento (di Massimo G. Colombo, Marco Delmastro, Luca Grilli) - ABSTRACT: This paper investigates the determinants of the start-up size of new technology-based firms. While previous empirical studies generally focussed on industry-specific variables, we draw attention to firm-specific effects. In particular, we consider the impact on start-up size of the human capital of founders and their ability to resort to external sources of financing. In the empirical section we consider a sample of 391 young Italian firms operating in high-tech industries in both manufacturing and services. The econometric estimates confirm the explanatory power of firm-specific effects, in addition to the industry-specific effects highlighted by previous work. In particular, they indicate that the human capital of founders and the ability to have access to private equity financing figure prominently in explaining firms’ start-up size, while the effect of bank debt is negligible. Furthermore, the specific component of human capital associated with industry-specific professional knowledge and managerial and entrepreneurial experience is found to have a greater positive impact on initial firm size than the generic component, proxied by education and general (i.e. non industry-specific) working experience. This holds true especially for firms that obtain access to private equity, pointing to the complementarity between entrepreneurial talent and external financing.

Date: 2003
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