This paper examines the internal anatomy of regional social capital and develops a role for dealmakers – individuals who provide active regional stewardship. An empirical analysis of twelve US regions finds great variation in the presence of dealmakers. The strong local presence of dealmakers is correlated with high start-up rates. The empirical results suggest that the local presence of dealmakers is more important for successful entrepreneurship than aggregate measures of regional entrepreneurial and investors network. Moreover, it is found that the presence of dealmakers is a better predictor of the status of the regional entrepreneurial economy.
Networks of serial entrepreneurs, investors, and their affiliated companies play a critical role in driving entrepreneurial behavior, investor focus, and innovation hot spots within specific industry sectors and are critical for shaping the character of robust regional economies.
This article examines what happens to firms that become affiliated with ‘dealmakers’—individuals who are unusually well connected in local social networks.