• Agency Costs, Reputation and Collaboration: Syndication in the UK Market for Private Equity

      Meuleman, Miguel; Wright, Mike; Manigart, Sophie; Lockett, Andy (2007)
      Syndicates are a form of inter-firm alliance in which two or more private equity firms co-invest in an investee firm and share a joint pay-off, and are an enduring feature of the private equity industry. This study examines the relationship between syndication and agency costs at the level of the investee, and the extent to which the reputation and social embeddedness of the lead investor mediates this relationship. We examine this relationships using a sample of 732 buyout investments by 64 private equity companies in the UK between 1993 and 2001. Our findings show that where agency costs are highest, and hence ex-post monitoring by the lead investor is more important, syndication is less likely to occur. The negative relationship between agency costs and syndication, however, is mediated by the reputation and social embeddedness of the lead investor firm. That is, the reputation and social embeddedness of the lead investor helps to alleviate the costs associated with a syndicate arrangement. The results further highlight potential problems of adverse selection in the market for syndication.