This Article makes the case for corporate venture capital as a potentially game-changing entrant into entrepreneurial finance. Part II begins by retracing the ancillary players in entrepreneurial finance and their roles in the startup ecosystem. After finding each of them incapable of denting the venture capitalist’s current dominance, Part III introduces the large corporation as venture capitalist. Part III discusses the growing scale of corporate venture capital and why it may be desirable for startups, innovation, and society as a whole. Part IV looks at legal differences that may become important for corporate venture capitalists to consider, including securities, antitrust, and corporate law concerns.

Importantly, the Article concludes not by per se endorsing corporate venture capital over venture capital, but recognizing that corporate venture capital has a greater role to play in entrepreneurial finance going forward. It is likely that corporate venture capital and traditional venture capital work side-by-side. This new state of the world with corporate venture capitalist has important implications for future law-and-entrepreneurship and law-and-economics scholarship. As a descriptive piece of scholarship, this paper answers some questions but leaves others that need empirical investigation dangling. Normatively, it makes the cautious case for corporate venture capital, finding strong tailwinds and few legal concerns.

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2021

Publication Information

24 University of Pennsylvania Journal of Business Law 209-243 (2021)