Gender Diversity Effects in Investment Decisions

Hohl L, Bican P, Guderian C, Riar FJ (2021)

Publication Type: Journal article

Publication year: 2021


Book Volume: 30

Pages Range: 134-152

Journal Issue: 1

DOI: 10.1177/0971355720974821


This study examines the gender gap in investment decisions in a prominent setting: the American TV show Shark Tank. Our study is based on a sample of 895 pitches from 10 seasons comprising 222 episodes from 2009 to 2019. Contradicting prior research, our findings suggest that female entrepreneurs are not discriminated against in pitch success rates, independent of their respective industrial settings. We find that the valuations from the entrepreneurs themselves (males overvalued their ventures by 57.19%) and final deal valuations (male deals were overvalued by 50.50%) are significantly lower for females, hinting towards a self-imposed gender gap in entrepreneurship and angel investing. As the gender gap in entrepreneurship and angel investment seems to result from a lower rate of entrepreneurial intentions by women, we suggest fostering female entrepreneurship by raising the number of female entrepreneurs and business angels who may serve as role models among those potential female entrepreneurs and business angels at the brink of becoming actual entrepreneurs, as demonstrated in Shark Tank. Particularly, in teams, mixed founder teams consisting of males and females may support the creation of promising start-ups with viable business models.

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Hohl, L., Bican, P., Guderian, C., & Riar, F.J. (2021). Gender Diversity Effects in Investment Decisions. Journal of Entrepreneurship, 30(1), 134-152.


Hohl, Lennard, et al. "Gender Diversity Effects in Investment Decisions." Journal of Entrepreneurship 30.1 (2021): 134-152.

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