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Intellectual capital in tangible intensive firms: the case of Brazilian real estate companies

Daniel Pitelli Britto (Real Estate Research Group, Escola Politecnica da Universidade de Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil)
Eliane Monetti (Real Estate Research Group, Escola Politecnica da Universidade de Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil)
Joao da Rocha Lima Jr (Real Estate Research Group, Escola Politecnica da Universidade de Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil)

Journal of Intellectual Capital

ISSN: 1469-1930

Article publication date: 8 April 2014

1033

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to clarify whether value created by real estate (RE) companies (tangible intensive firms) can be evaluated better using intellectual capital (IC) elements (human, structural and physical assets) or traditional accounting measures of efficiency (ROIC and profit margins).

Design/methodology/approach

Correlations and cross-sectional OLS regressions with robust standard errors were used to find relationships between variables explaining value creation. Data were collected from 2007 to 2011 for Brazilian RE firms. To measure market risk, the authors used a new approach to deal with low liquidity. VAIC and I j ratios were used as IC proxies even though both have limitations.

Findings

IC has a significant inverse relationship with market value. The more valuable companies showed lower levels of IC except for CEE which explains value as much as ROIC. Also, IC does not influence market risk caused by size and leverage and does not explain ROIC.

Research limitations/implications

The limitations of this study result from time and proxy variables. IC was measured by a VAIC model using data from a period of intense volatility. To increase the robustness of the conclusions, other variables should be used as proxies for IC and the results compared. The VAIC model has certain deficiencies in measuring IC.

Practical implications

Managers and investors in the RE sector need to change the way they create value and measure value creation. The low level of HC explaining either ROIC or market value is a signal of low innovation which, combined with high CEE, induces a short-term outlook.

Originality/value

This study opens discussion of IC in the Brazilian RE sector. A new methodology for identifying value creation is necessary for better evaluation and determining the fair value of firms.

Keywords

Citation

Pitelli Britto, D., Monetti, E. and da Rocha Lima Jr, J. (2014), "Intellectual capital in tangible intensive firms: the case of Brazilian real estate companies", Journal of Intellectual Capital, Vol. 15 No. 2, pp. 333-348. https://doi.org/10.1108/JIC-10-2013-0108

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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