Title: Acquisition of external capital at start-up stage: differences between Swedish female- and male-owned firms

Authors: Darush Yazdanfar; Sara Jahandar

Addresses: Department of Social Sciences, Mid Sweden University, Regementsgatan 25-27, Östersund 831 25, Sweden. ' Nottingham Business School, Nottingham Trent University, Chaucer 4711, Nottingham NG1 4BU, UK

Abstract: This research explores differences in external capital acquisition between female- and male-owned firms at start-up stage in Sweden. The study sample is taken from a unique and large database including 836 female- and 1928 male-owned firms in 2008, giving a total of 47,022 observations. ANOVA, multinomial logistic regression, and other robust statistical tests are employed to analyse the data. The results indicate that two variables, i.e., loans from family members and government grants, are significant in distinguishing between female- and male-owned firms in terms of external start-up capital. The findings also indicate that owners' previous experience and having an additional job outside one's own business influence the use of external capital at start-up stage. Knowledge of the difference between female- and male-owned firms' use external capital at start-up stage is limited and ambiguous. The present results contribute to research into small firm financing by adding insight into the relationships between capital acquisition, gender, and other variables.

Keywords: female-owned firms; male-owned firms; small business finance; funding sources; gender; Sweden; external capital; start-ups; start-up capital; female entrepreneurship; women enterpreneurs; family members; government grants; capital acquisition; small firms.

DOI: 10.1504/IJESB.2012.046474

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, 2012 Vol.15 No.4, pp.435 - 451

Published online: 14 Aug 2014 *

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