This study examines factors that influence a public firm's decision to early-adopt blockchain technology. Blockchain technology has the potential to disrupt how firms collect, process, and maintain information about a wide range of firm activities including transactions and supply chain interactions. We examine several determinants of early blockchain adoption including patented technology, agency costs, complexity, and external monitoring. Our results suggest that blockchain early adoption involves opportunistic managerial behavior. Further, firms with greater technology innovations, proxied by number of patents, are more likely to disclose early adoption, possibly to overcome productivity concerns or attract inter-firm opportunities. We also examine the consequences of early adoption using a market-based approach. Our results suggest that blockchain adoption could be a lengthy and costly process. Our study provides evidence on why firms adopt this disruptive technology and informs regulators and policy makers on how managers can influence the blockchain early adoption decision.

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