Fortune Magazine’s latest issue has an article on how Fortune 500 companies that are still run by the founders are tearing up the market.
While the Fortune 500 sample is small, there is other evidence based on research of an Ohio State University finance professor named Radiger Fahlenbrach that companies run by founder-CEOs outperform the broader stock market by 8 %. One of the reasons being put forth for this finding is that founders care more. The study further uncovered other interesting facts – namely that “founder-run companies have bigger capital budgets and invest considerably more in research and development than nonfounder-run firms.”
Unfortunately, this is not a widely held belief amongst typical startup backers, who are too often rushing towards pushing founders to the side and replacing them with “professional management”- types to “babysit” their investment. There is no question that some founders are not CEO material, but before taking out founders from the executive team line-up, investors and board members should really look at complementing the weaknesses of the founders in other ways.