Ntim, Collins G., Opong, Kwaku K. and Danbolt, Jo (2015) Board Size, Corporate Regulations and Firm Valuation in an Emerging Market: A Simultaneous Equation Approach. International Review of Appplied Economics, 29 (2). ISSN 0269-2171

We investigate the association between board size and firm valuation for a sample of 169 firms from 2002 to 2011 in South Africa (SA). The SA corporate context is interestingly and uniquely characterised by greater urgency to meet affirmative action regulations, such as black empowerment in board appointments, limited qualified and experienced directors, especially black directors, concentrated ownership, weak enforcement of corporate regulations and greater government ownership. These features make SA corporate boards perform a weaker agency (advisory, monitoring and disciplining) role than Western European and US boards, but a stronger resource dependence role, by providing access to resources, such as business contacts and contracts. This suggests that any positive impact of board size on firm valuation is likely to depend on the effective execution of the resource dependence role than the agency role. Our results suggest that board size has a positive association with firm valuation, consistent with larger boards providing better access to resources. Overall, our results support the resource dependence role of boards than their agency role. The results are robust across a raft of econometric models that control for different types of endogeneity, as well as different types of accounting and market-based firm valuation measures.

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