DP7089 Venture Capital and Industrial ''Innovation''

Author(s): Masayuki Hirukawa, Masako Ueda
Publication Date: December 2008
Keyword(s): Factor Substitution, Innovation, Patent, Productivity, Venture Capital
JEL(s): D24, G24, O31, O32
Programme Areas: Financial Economics
Link to this Page: www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=7089

For the sample period of 1965-1992, Kortum and Lerner (2000) find that venture capital (VC) investments have a positive impact on patent count at industry level, and this impact is larger than that of R&D expenditures. We confirm that this positive impact continued to be present and became even stronger in late 90s during which VC industry experienced an unprecedented growth. We then proceed to study if this positive impact of VC is also present on productivity growth, which is a measure of innovation alternative to patent count. Unlike the impact on patent count, we do not find that VC investment affects total factor productivity growth. We do find that VC investment is positively associated with labor productivity but this positive impact is originated from the technology substitution from labor to other productive inputs such as energy and material. Therefore, our finding suggests that, at industry level, VC investment increases the patent propensity but may not necessarily improve the productive efficiency. Various interpretations are offered why this may be the case.