Partnership Developer/Marketer


I'm a developer who is leaving his job next month to pursue a startup. I've come up with the idea, and I have the skills and drive to implement it.

My partner is in marketing and an excellent salesman. I feel having him on board is an invaluable asset.

I'm wondering what kind of partnership we should work out. I've read 50/50 is the best, but realistically until the product is complete, I'll be doing all the work. Theres no way he can leave his job to work full time, and until the product exists, theres really no point. How have people in the past worked out this type of situation?

I've seen similar questions to this, but none answer it exactly.



asked Aug 21 '13 at 02:07
1 point
  • There will never be an exact answer, since every business & founding member in a company **is** different. The above posts highlights the different approaches discussed on this site - I hope it can provide some insight into your decision making process. All the best. – Jim Galley 5 years ago

1 Answer


This may be slightly tongue-in-cheek but surely there will come a point in your startup where the concept is built and he earns his fair share with the very hard work of selling customers and handling customer service.

If you actually think you bring so much more to the execution, then present a case around it to your partner. But I am of the opinion that the idea is only a small value to a startup. The true value comes in executing on growth and that takes committed team members.

Its hard to imagine a committed pair of founders where the equity doesn't go 50-50.

answered Aug 21 '13 at 04:15
255 points
  • Thanks for the reply. Do people compensate themselves for the initial time investment before a partner's work is necessary? – Phil 5 years ago
  • I have seen that happen before, but we're talking barely scraping by wages... Its a classic mistake to come in w a great idea and decent capital that you guys scraped together and then pay yourself the salary that you're accustomed to... Its justifiable that you will need to eat and whatnot, but if your business partner is dumping money in, he or she may feel resentment if they think you're living it up making start up stuff happen while they bust their ass pulling double duty. It sows the seeds of a breakup before you two even launch a product. – Theao 5 years ago
  • Thanks again for your input! – Phil 5 years ago

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