- Going public - going private : the case of VC-backed firms (2012)
- We investigate the decisions of listed firms to go private once again. We start by revealing that while a significant number of firms which go public is VC-backed, an overproportional share of these VC-backed firms go private later on (they stay on the exchange for an average of 8.5 years). We interpret this very robust pattern such that IPOs of VC-backed firms are to a large extent a temporary rather than a permanent feature of the corporate governance of these firms. We investigate various potential hypotheses why VCs actually seem to be able to bring marginal firms to the exchange by relating the going-private decisions to various characteristics of the IPO market as well as to VC characteristics. We find strong support for the certification ability of VCs: more experienced and reputable VCs are more able to bring marginal firms to public exchanges via an IPOs. These marginal firms backed-by more reputable and experienced VCs are more likely to go private later on. Hence, our analysis suggests that IPOs backed by experienced VCs are most likely to be a temporary rather than the final stage in the life of the portfolio firm. We find no support that reputable VCs underprice their IPO-exits more implying that they have no need to leave more money on the table to take the marginal firms public.
- Basel III and CEO compensation in Banks : pay structures as a regulatory signal (2013)
- This paper proposes a new regulatory approach that implements capital requirements contingent on managerial compensation. We argue that excessive risk taking in the financial sector originates from the shareholder moral hazard created by government guarantees rather than from corporate governance failures within banks. The idea of the proposed regulation is to utilize the compensation scheme to drive a wedge between the interests of top management and shareholders to counteract shareholder risk-shifting incentives. The decisive advantage of this approach compared to existing regulation is that the regulator does not need to be able to properly measure the bank investment risk, which has been shown to be a difficult task during the 2008-2009 financial crisis.
- Insight private equity (2013)
- We are able to shed light on the black box of restructuring tools private equity investors use to improve the operational performance of their portfolio companies. By building on previous work considering performance evaluation of PE backed companies, we analyze whether private equity improves operating efficiency and which of the typical restructuring tools are the main performance drivers. Using a set of over 300 international leveraged buyout transactions of the last thirty years, we find that while there is vast improvement in operational efficiency, these gains vary considerably. Our top performing transactions are subject to strong equity incentives, frequent asset restructuring and tight control by the investor. Furthermore, investors’ experience has a positive influence while financial leverage has no influence on operational performance.
- Performance benefits of tight control (2013)
- This study investigates the transition from being a listed company with a dispersed ownership structure to being a privately held company with a concentrated ownership structure. We consider a sample of private equity backed portfolio companies to evaluate the consequences of the corporate governance changes on operational performance. Our analysis shows significant positive abnormal growth in several performance ratios for the private period of our sample companies relative to comparable public companies. These performance differences come from the increase in ownership concentration after the leveraged buyout transaction.