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Board characteristics, ownership concentration and firms’ performance: A contingent theoretical based approach

Abdul Waheed (Department of Economics & Finance, Foundation University − Rawalpindi Campus, Rawalpindi, Pakistan)
Qaisar Ali Malik (Department of Economics & Finance, Foundation University − Rawalpindi Campus, Rawalpindi, Pakistan)

South Asian Journal of Business Studies

ISSN: 2398-628X

Article publication date: 23 May 2019

Issue publication date: 23 May 2019

1273

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to extend the understanding and application of interactive ties creating value through board characteristics, ownership concentration and firms’ performance by using a contingent theoretical-based framework based on the amalgamation of resource dependence theory, stakeholder theory, agency theory, stewardship theory and institutional theory in a country with weak political environment.

Design/methodology/approach

This study includes a sample of an unbalanced panel of 309 non-financial sector firms listed on Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) from 2005 to 2016. In order to address the issue of unobserved heterogeneity, simultaneous and dynamic endogeneity, the current study employed the technique Arellano–Bond dynamic panel data estimation under assumptions of GMM (Arellano–Bond, 1991).

Findings

The empirical results suggest that the presence of concentrated ownership moderates and helps to overcome the agency problems through different governance mechanisms (such as board size, independent directors and CEO duality). The larger boards are found to be beneficial whereas the higher representation of independent directors in the board is found to be detrimental for Pakistani firms.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations of the study are, first the current study has analyzed public-listed firms from the non-financial sector, and second the study has only focused on the financial aspect of the performance. The future research could include other proxies of corporate governance and ownership structure such as board diversity and meetings, audit committee and managerial ownership, etc.

Practical implications

The research also helps Pakistani policy makers in numerous ways. First, the current study confirms the monitoring and expropriation effect of ownership concentration in corporate governance and performance mechanism. Thus, the Security and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) should make such policies which protect the corporate board against the influence of concentrated ownership so that the interests of the minority shareholders are protected. Second, SECP should ensure that all the listed firms declare a comprehensive profile of their directors (such as academic qualification, age and experience) in their annual reports for the better understanding of the governance−performance mechanism.

Originality/value

The current study augments the emerging body of literature on corporate governance and firm performance mechanism through the amalgamation and testing of existing theories in an emerging economy like Pakistan by using wider and newer data set.

Keywords

Citation

Waheed, A. and Malik, Q.A. (2019), "Board characteristics, ownership concentration and firms’ performance: A contingent theoretical based approach", South Asian Journal of Business Studies, Vol. 8 No. 2, pp. 146-165. https://doi.org/10.1108/SAJBS-03-2018-0031

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited

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