Whom should entrepreneurs approach? the effect of contacts’ status on new venture acquisition

Jiaosha Chen, Xi Chen, Michael Zhen, Jin Chen

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Prior studies focus on the relationship between entrepreneurial networking approaches and entrepreneurial outcomes but paid little attention to the role of contacts in facilitating that process. This study investigates the role of contacts in the acquisition of new ventures.
Drawing on middle-status conformity theory, we posit that since middle-status managers are more risk averse than high- or low-status managers, when being approached by new ventures, their tendency to facilitate acquiring new ventures will be lower, given the liability of new ventures. Thus, the status of contacts in potential acquiring companies will have a Ushaped effect on the probability of new ventures to be acquired. We further hypothesize that this U-shaped effect will be more pronounced when the risk of status loss is higher, and the effect can be attenuated by industry norms that encourage risk-taking. The results based on a sample of 19,507 venture-acquirer dyads on acquisitions in China rendered sufficient support to our hypotheses. The findings contribute to both social network research and middle-status conformity theory, and provide important implications for “whom” entrepreneurs should approach to achieve acquisition success.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2021
EventStrategic Management Society (SMS) Annual Conference - Virtual, Toronto, Canada
Duration: 18 Sept 202121 Sept 2021
Conference number: 41st


ConferenceStrategic Management Society (SMS) Annual Conference


Dive into the research topics of 'Whom should entrepreneurs approach? the effect of contacts’ status on new venture acquisition'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this