How to make sure I get a fair share of the company


A potential partner and I discussed one of my ideas. The idea is mine and at the time of discussion, it was not clear that we would be partners. I was essentially discussing ideas with an industry senior. In conversation, the senior expressed interest in "taking it up". While we have not worked out what that means, we will be meeting again several times to thrash out the details. I definitely want credit for my idea, co-founder status and appropriate equity among other things. What is the best way to ensure that I get all of this without rubbing this person on the wrong side. What would be my obligations to the company if I am co-founder. Should I give up my 9-5? Are there other things that I should ask for before going into business together. What will I owe this other person? IOW, how do we divide ownership equitably?

Co-Founder Ideas Equity Partnerships

asked Jul 15 '13 at 11:54
186 points
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1 Answer


This is an usual question... and a hard one.

You may consider these questions:

  • how is your idea original?
  • could you do it without the money/help of the other person?
  • could you easily find someone else as potential partner?
  • what will be your role and involvement after the "company" is set up?
  • hich part of the necessary work will be on your shoulders?
  • do you "feel well" the other person?

And so on... It's always a question of an agreement.
You mast compare what you bring and what he brings. The objective balance of this will show you the correct equity share...

And will you need to leave your 9-5? Of course it depends on the workload of your new activity, on your family life, if you need a secure & stable income (e.g. do you have a mortgage?), if yes, the new activiti can give you such an income? ...and so on. That is too general that it can't be answer here.

answered Aug 2 '13 at 23:28
61 points

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Co-Founder Ideas Equity Partnerships