Patient capital in entrepreneurial finance: a reassessment of the role of business angel investors

Richard T. Harrison, Tiago Botelho, Colin M. Mason

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)
27 Downloads (Pure)


The debate on patient capital, particularly in the varieties of capitalism literature, concentrates on institutions and public markets. In this paper we take an entrepreneurial finance perspective to examine the investment attitudes and behaviours of business angels. These represent the biggest source of external risk capital for new and young growing companies and therefore play a critical role in entrepreneurial ecosystems. Drawing on both a detailed review of previous research on business angel investment time horizons, investor engagement and exit behaviour and new survey evidence we conclude that only a minority of angels could be defined as being exit-centric investors. It can be concluded that the vast majority of angels are patient investors in terms of investment intentions, engagement and exit behaviour, largely by default rather than intent. Most do not consider the exit at the investment appraisal stage nor the need for patience.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)669-689
Number of pages21
JournalSocio-Economic Review
Issue number4
Early online date23 Dec 2016
Publication statusPublished - 23 Dec 2016


  • varieties of capitalism
  • voice
  • corporate finance
  • patient capital
  • business angels
  • exits

Cite this