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Issue Season

Spring

Document Type

Research Article

Abstract

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) commonly struggle to acquire needed financial, human, and technological resources. The above being stated, recent scholarly research argues that SMEs that are able to successfully navigate the legitimacy threshold are better able to gather the resources they need to survive and grow. This article provides an empirical test of that claim by examining whether the presence of a corporate parent positively influences SME resource acquisition. Results of the study show that SMEs with corporate parents, when compared to like-sized independent SMEs, have higher credit scores, have more complete management teams, use more computers, and are more likely to be on the Internet. These differences are most pronounced for very small firms and diminish in significance as firm size increases. Study implications include the notion that presence of a corporate parent likely represents a successful navigation of the legitimacy threshold, positively increasing SME resource acquisition.