How human capital interacts with the early development of academic spin-offs
Faculty of Applied Economics
Engineering sciences. Technology
International entrepreneurship and management journal. - Boston, Mass.
, p. 599-621
University of Antwerp
This paper focuses on venture team characteristics with respect to human capital dimensions in early stage ventures emerging from academic research (institutions). Three major groups have been investigated: founders, top managers and directors. Data was obtained using personal interviews with 185 product-oriented academic spin-offs in nine European countries, including those of 17 failures. The results show a significant positivebut diminishingimpact of team heterogeneity on venture success, as well as a positive impact from legal expertise within the board of directors. At management level, the results further indicate that larger management team are better equipped to face the challenges in academic spin-offs. Furthermore, the added value of serial entrepreneurs is questioned, since they seem to negatively impact a spin-offs survival chances. Several implications are addressed, dealing with an appropriate team composition (on the levels of both top management and the board of directors) as well as the importance of paying attention to team development.