Possible Duplicate: How to Divide Up Your Company's Equity
I am teaming up with two co-founders to build a web platform. The two partners are business guys while I am the sole techie. I am in the US on a work visa due to which I would be working on the project for another year or so on a part-time basis only for equity and no pay. Once and when we have funds I will be joining the project full-time as CTO and co-founder. My current share is 7% while part-time and 15% with a salary when I join full-time a year from now. The salary when I join full-time is pretty low and is to comply with my visa status. The web-site being build is pretty complex and needs certain amount of innovation. They have been spending their own funds on the project for a a few months now. Both are working full-time on this. Please advise whether this is a fair proposition.
Working on a part-time basis and having "no skin in the game" other than your time -- it sounds like a good deal to me. Bumping that up to 15% when you start full-time sounds equitable as well. Of course that depends on how many hours you are spending on the project while part-time vs. the other founders. And how much money are they putting up? If they are only putting up $100/month for hosting and full-time just means they are directing you and not much else, then you're getting a raw deal.
At the end of the day however, if you feel like it's an equitable arrangement then it is fair. If you think you are being undercut then you need to talk to your partners now. Feeling like you are being cheated does not go away no matter how successful the company gets. In fact those feels are likely to intensify in that case.