While the current literature looks at founder at the start-up phase of the firm, we research the role these founders play when their firm grows large. More specifically, we look at founders at the time of the IPO, and also at founder-CEOs of large public firms.
Some of the key insights include the following:
- When founders lose power at the turmoil of the IPO, they get frustrated and increase their likelihood to exit their firm.
- Founders play a key figurehead role at IPO and their presence and background affect the fundraising efforts. More specifically, specialist founders (in an industry or function) are perceived more favourably by IPO investors than founders that are ‘jack of all trades’. Consequently, specialist founders tend to raise more funding at IPO. In other words, investors expect domain experts to bring the growing firm to the next level of performance.
Another focus of this «field of expertise» is how entrepreneurs behave and feel. More specifically, we have investigated the concepts of hope and fear, as well as stress and mental well-being.
Publications and working papers
IPOs and Exits
- Souitaris, V., Peng, B., Zerbinati, S. and Shepherd, D.A. (2023). Specialists, Generalists, or Both? Founders’ Multidimensional Breadth of Experience and Entrepreneurial Ventures’ Fundraising at IPO. Organization Science.
- Shepherd, D., Souitaris, V. and Gruber, M. (2021) Creating new ventures. A review and research agenda. Journal of Management.
- Souitaris, V., Zerbinati, S., Peng, G., Shepherd, D. (2020) Should I Stay or Should I Go? Founder Power and Exit via Initial Public Offering. Academy of Management Journal, 63(1): 64-95.
- Huang, T., Souitaris, V., and Barsade, S. (2019) Which matters more? Group fear versus hope in entrepreneurial escalation of commitment. Strategic Management journal, 40 (11):1852–1881.
- Hsueh, J. Souitaris, V., Bird, M., Entrepreneurs’ mind power: The change of entrepreneurs’ mental well-being and its influence on entrepreneurial income. Working paper, under review.
- Souitaris, V., Nicolaou, N., Waters, J.M., Shepherd, D., and Hashem, N. Does engagement in entrepreneurship increase stress? Monozygotic twins, perceived versus objective stress and cortisol patterns. Working paper, under review
IPOS and Exits
- Founder CEOs: A contingency assessment of their impact, GFF research grant (Kalogeraki, Souitaris),
Exploring the impact of founder succession in large public firms (Georgakakis, Souitaris)
- Entrepreneurship and mental well-being, GFF research grant (Hsueh, Souitaris, Kowatsch)
We are aim to assess whether behavioural therapy affects well-being of entrepreneurs, using an application-based CBT-tool, which follows a set of entrepreneurs/participants longitudinally.
Impact and transfer
We regularly communicate these ideas and research results in the classroom, for example in Master’s degrees in Management (High-Growth Entrepreneurship course for MUG and MBI) and in PhD workshops (e.g. how to become a top scholar workshop).