Abstract

Although women-led businesses (WLBs) are one of the fastest growing groups of entrepreneurial ventures (Brush, De Bruin, & Welter, 2009), WLBs receive substantially less venture capital funding than men-led businesses (MLBs, Brush et al, 2004). Extant research has focused primarily on the characteristics of WLBs. Here, we focus on social capital of VC firms that influence their tendency to invest in WLBs. Drawing from extant literature, we test the following hypotheses:

1. Investment in WLBs by VC firms will be negatively associated with the VC firms’ social capital.

2. VC firms’ performance will be positively associated with investing in WLBs.

3. Prior investment in WLBs by a VC firm will be positively associated with the VC firm’s future investments in WLBs.

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