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Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Columbia Law School

2003

Tax Law

Harvard Law Review

Articles 1 - 1 of 1

Full-Text Articles in Law

Understanding Venture Capital Structure: A Tax Explanation For Convertible Preferred Stock, Ronald J. Gilson, David M. Schizer Jan 2003

Understanding Venture Capital Structure: A Tax Explanation For Convertible Preferred Stock, Ronald J. Gilson, David M. Schizer

Faculty Scholarship

The capital structures of venture capital-backed U.S. companies share a remarkable commonality: overwhelmingly, venture capitalists make their investments through convertible preferred stock. Not surprisingly, much of the academic literature on venture capital has sought to explain this peculiar pattern. Financial economists have developed models showing, for example, that convertible securities efficiently allocate control between the investor and entrepreneur,signal the entrepreneur's talent and motivation, and align the incentives of entrepreneurs and venture capitalists.

In this Article, we examine the influence of a more mundane factor on venture capital structure: tax law. Portfolio companies issue convertible preferred stock to ...