Research Interests: Empirical corporate finance: agency conflicts, and their impact on corporate policies
Links: Personal Website
Burcu Esmer is a Senior Research Fellow at Wharton Joshua J. Harris Alternative Investments Program and a faculty member at the Wharton School. Dr. Esmer earned her BSc in Economics and Minor in Mathematics from the Middle East Technical University (Turkiye) with Highest Honor (Summa Cum Laude), her MA in Economics and PhD in Finance from the University of Iowa. Dr. Esmer’s primary areas of research are empirical corporate finance, banking and private equity. She investigates agency conflicts, and their impact on corporate policies. Dr. Esmer has presented her work to different audiences at various academic and practioner conferences and workshops, and she frequently serves as a reviewer for academic journals and conferences. Burcu Esmer is a member of American Finance Association and European Finance Association.
Dr. Esmer teaches various private equity topics in Wharton Executive Education programs. She is the recipient of Wharton Teaching Excellence Reward for the academic year 2018-2019.
Abstract: Pricing and inventory management make up together revenue management, which is a significant effort to boost revenues out of available resources. Firms use various forms of dynamic pricing, including personalized pricing, markdowns, promotions, coupons, discounts, and clearance sales, to respond to market fluctuations and demand uncertainty. In this paper, we study a temporary price increase policy, a form of dynamic pricing, for a non-perishable product, a practice used by several giant retailers such as Amazon, Walmart, and Apple. We develop a continuous review inventory model that allows for joint replenishment and pricing decisions, where the lead time is not zero. A replenishment decision controls supply, while a pricing decision controls demand. A manager exercises a temporary price increase to slow demand and avoid a stock-out situation while waiting for a shipment, which may not necessarily increase revenues, but decrease stock-out costs. The problem is to solve for the optimal replenishment and the pricing policy parameters that maximize the long-run expected profit. That is, when and how much to order and when to raise the price. In this paper, the inventory level and time trigger a price increase. We solve many numerical examples and perform extensive sensitivity analyses. Our results show that compared to a model that focuses on fixed pricing, our model brings an additional increase in profit of about 13%.
Abstract: We explore how rival firms respond when firms in their industry violate debt covenants. We find that rival firms increase advertising expense, and that this increase is proportional to the size of industry violators’ pre-existing market share. Rival firm product-market share also increases in the industry market share of violators, and this relation is more pronounced when products are more substitutable. Rival firm operating performance also increases in proportion to the industry market share of violators. Overall, these findings suggest that the increased creditor control associated with covenant violations has a significant influence on rival firms and product-market competition.
The objective of this course is to study the major decision-making areas of managerial finance and some selected topics in financial theory. The course reviews the theory and empirical evidence related to the investment and financing policies of the firm and attempts to develop decision-making ability in these areas. This course serves as an extension of FNCE 100 (FNCE 611). Some are as of financial management not covered in FNCE 100 are covered in FNCE 203. These may include leasing, mergers and acquisitions, corporate reorganizations, financial planning and working capital management, and some other selected topics. Other areas that are covered in FNCE 100 are covered more in depth and more rigorously in FNCE 203. These include investment decision making under uncertainty, cost of capital, capital structure, pricing of selected financial instruments and corporate liabilities, and dividend policy.
The course focuses on financial tools, techniques, and best practices used in buyouts (financial buyers) and acquisitions (strategic buyers). While it will touch upon various strategic, organizational, and general management issues, the main lens for studying these transactions will be a financial one. It will explore how different buyers approach the process of finding, evaluating, and analyzing opportunities in the corporate-control market; how they structure deals and how deal structure affects both value creation and value division; how they add value after transaction completion; and how they realize their ultimate objectives (such as enhanced market position or a profitable exit). The course is divided into two broad modules. The first module covers mergers and acquisitions, and the second one studies buyouts by private equity partnerships. During the spring semester this course cannot be taken pass/fail. FNCE 203 or FNCE 207 may be taken concurrently.
This course will address a variety of applied topics in private equity (PE), with a focus on growth and later-stage buyout transactions (venture capital is not explicitly addressed in this course), and a primarily U.S.-centric view that should be largely applicable in other markets. In addition, the course will focus on the transaction stage of PE investing i.e., the art of the deal and mostly leave aside deal sourcing, portfolio management and investor relations. The goal of this course is to educate students about the substance, process and mechanics of PE investing, through the lens of the investment professionals, counterparties and advisors that drive transactions to completion. Course topics will address the entire deal process, and will include the following: Commercial Diligence (incl. financial modeling); Debt Financing; Accounting Diligence; Sales & Purchase Agreements; Comps Analysis; and Other Advisory Work. Throughout the course, students will learn about each element of the deal process through in-class lectures, while concurrently apply those learnings to a real-time mock deal, and preparing dealmaterials that mirror a real private equity transaction. The in-class lectures will cover both conceptual frameworks and real-world examples.
Integrates the work of the various courses and familiarizes the student with the tools and techniques of research.
This course will cover a variety of applied topics in private equity (PE) with a focus on growth and later-stage buyout transactions. It will have a primarily U.S.-centric view that is largely applicable to other markets. Venture capital is not explicitly addressed in this course. Course topics will address the entirety of the deal process and value creation in the post-acquisition period, and will include the following: - LBO modeling - Commercial due diligence (principles and execution) - Debt financing - Sale & purchase agreements (SPA) - Accounting diligence - Deal structuring - Operations & Value creation Throughout the course, students will learn about each element of the deal process through in-class lectures, while concurrently applying those learnings to former transactions (these must be old enough that sharing material is no longer sensitive). The in-class lectures will cover conceptual frameworks, practical considerations and real-world case studies and examples. There will be four assignments in this course. The first three assignments will apply these learnings to the art of the deal through a real world lens. In the last assignment, students will develop a value creation plan for designated public companies "TargetCo1" and "TargetCo2". Students are expected to actively engage in classroom discussions, challenging one another and the instructors about how to think through these issues in an ever-evolving investment world. In addition, throughout the course, students are expected to work as a team on the assignments.
The objective of this course is to study the major decision-making areas of managerial finance and some selected topics in financial theory. The course reviews the theory and empirical evidence related to the investment and financing policies of the firm and attempts to develop decision-making ability in these areas. This course serves as an extension of FNCE 611. Some areas of financial management not covered in FNCE 611 are covered in FNCE 726. These may include leasing, mergers and acquisitions, corporate reorganizations, financial planning, and working capital management, and some other selected topics. Other areas that are covered in FNCE 611 are covered more in depth and more rigorously in FNCE 726. These include investment decision making under uncertainty, cost of capital, capital structure, pricing of selected financial instruments and corporate liabilities, and dividend policy.
The focus of this course is on buying (or acquiring controlling stakes in) firms. The main topics to be covered are mergers and friendly acquisitions, hostile takeovers and buyouts. Using case studies, the course surveys the drivers of success in the transactions. While issues regarding motive and strategy will be discussed, financial theory would be the main lens used to view these control acquiring transactions. This will allow students to (1) evaluate transactions through valuation approaches and (2) structure deals employing financial innovation as a response to legal framework and economic frictions. This course should be of interest to students interested in pursuing careers as private equity investors, advisors in investment banking and corporate managers that deal with these issues. This course assumes familiarity with valuation analysis. During the spring semester students are not permitted to take this course pass fail. In addition to prerequisites, FNCE 726 or 728 are recommended but not required.
Independent Study Projects require extensive independent work and a considerable amount of writing. ISP in Finance are intended to give students the opportunity to study a particular topic in Finance in greater depth than is covered in the curriculum. The application for ISP's should outline a plan of study that requires at least as much work as a typical course in the Finance Department that meets twice a week. Applications for FNCE 899 ISP's will not be accepted after the THIRD WEEK OF THE SEMESTER. ISP's must be supervised by a Standing Faculty member of the Finance Department.
Wharton Teaching Excellence Reward, 2019