Building Teams · Finding cofounders

Property Fintech startup helping First Time buyers to buy and own their first home without a mortgage

Abdi Mohamed Founder/CEO @LaddrUp - Home ownership without a deposit or mortgage

Last updated on August 19th, 2019

Hey everyone,

I am the founder of a Property Fintech based in London. Our platform aims to help first Time Buyers to get on the property ladder without a mortgage or saving up for a large deposit.

The issue I have at the moment is finding my core team and co founder. I have advertised the job specs(which I made sure was clear and precise and full explanation of the company) on many job websites but no takers. Everyone I have spoken to, wether family/friends/coworkers and job seekers in general love the idea and think it can work but no one is of course willing to come on board. I have done the market research and have spoken to many property experts who also found the idea to be perfect for the market.

If you are a startup founder with a team, what would your advice be on the steps I should take to recruit people that truly believe in my business and want to come on board

Paul Garcia marketing exec & business advisor

Last updated on August 30th, 2019

There's a big difference between a good idea, and a proven idea. It's exceptionally tough to recruit someone just because it's a good idea. When it's a proven idea, recruitment is much easier.

Let me ask you this. Are you saying you want a co-founder because you want someone to work for you for no money (equity)? That's not what a co-founder is for. A co-founder, and MOST companies don't need one, is someone who shares your vision and in some way compliments your skills so that you both advance together. It is not an employee who gets no pay because they're first and they can fill a skill gap you have. Liking your idea is not the same as sharing your vision.

I'm guessing that you are more likely to need a core team of employees, not a co-founder. And yes, this is CoFoundersLab, and some things ARE easier to accomplish with a peer by your side. The complications of having any more founders though are that the decision process tends to slow down exponentially. Now if the issue is the same as most startup companies, that you simply don't have the funds to hire employees, that's a completely different issue than searching for a co-founder. If what you need is the money to hire employees, you would be better served figuring out how to generate that money so you can hire those employees, than trying to find someone willing to work for sweat equity in a company that has not proven success yet.

I see that finding co-founders is most often like most dating apps. They're overpopulated by the people who want someone to work on their terms, and have far too few members who want to find someone whose terms they find intriguing. Another analogy is having 10 fisherman fishing within 5 feet of one another, all hoping to catch the same fish.

There are two things you can do. 1) prove your idea works on your own or 2) get some money so you can hire employees and prove your idea works

It doesn't seem to me that what you need is a co-founder. Start with the basic steps of any company considering forming and considering their product. Make a list of all your assumptions. Test each assumption individually. Do your basic research and compose your marketing strategy. Validate your strategy and prove that you have a method for selling your service and that people are willing to pay a specific amount of money to use your platform. This determines your product-market fit and will guide the development of your platform when you're ready for that step.

From experience, these research steps will probably take you 2-3 months of steady work. You will learn a ton more than you know now about your industry, and you'll have far more accurate insights on how you will actually be able to make money with your idea. It may be significantly different than what you are thinking today, but you'll know for sure before you spend a dime because you'll have validated each option. If you still determine that you want to work on this with a co-founder, you'll be in a very strong position to explain exactly how things are going to work. This reduces the risk for anyone joining you. And you'll have a more willing pool of candidates when you can address the usual risks in a credible way.

Good luck.

David Insro Founder & CEO, Serial Entrepreneur

August 20th, 2019

What sort of co-founder are you looking for? Are you looking for someone who just has the title but has to do what you say or a true partner who has a equal say in the business? Secondly, what sort of equity are you offering them? If you are pre-mvp, you'd have to give away 49% of the company. Post-mvp you'd have to give away 40%.

Mr. Kelly Johnson Looking for Co-founder

August 20th, 2019

I don't comment much, but your concept intrigued me. I was a real estate investor in a previous life (In the states), and have a passion for innovative Fintech ideas.

Probably not, but I'd love to hear how you accomplish it.