Founder Life

How long to bootstrap for before you should look for funding

BootstrappingFundingSolo Founders
38 calls booked about this topic

Facing a similar challenge?

  • Talk to someone who has been there before
  • Get unbiased insight from industry veterans
  • Work through the issue with a mentor by your side

Well that is a loaded question! It’s quite the process and something that you definitely need to do a lot of research about before jumping into this process.

There are thousands of blog posts, podcasts and books written on this tiny question.

Our opinion based on the +1,000 startups that have used this platform is that you should stay bootstrapped for as long as you can.

Looking for funding takes a lot of concentration and time. Consequently, your ability to focus on your core business suffers. And when you’re at an early stage, you need to be on your A game.

Beyond just being a huge time suck, a lot of people don’t realize how complicated things are going to get when you bring on investors. You’ll have to prepare quarterly performance reviews, have to answer to people that aren’t qualified to give opinions, and generally be tied to the hip to people you don’t really know.

Common retorts are that funding is required to pay for salaries, invest in R&D, scale quickly to build moats, and a wide variety of other justifications. The problem is that most of the times funding isn’t the solution. It’s just one of the solutions.

Many sessions have been booked about this topic and it is something that really is best decided on a case by case basis.

Our Advice on Funding mentors will help you to weigh your options and share their experiences to help you decide which path to take towards raising funding.

Alicia Burke

Marketing & Platform @ Ascension Ventures
For the majority of my career, I've worked with a very tight/no budget so I've really honed in on how to prioritise initiatives, what tools to use, and how to progress from solid V1 solutions to a more scalable infrastructure.

“Alicia, was excellent. Immediately saw what I was doing (content marketing and building a community-resource page for acquisition). Spotted the issue and had a range of helpful suggestions, models, tools and directions.”

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Ben Chiriboga
Head of Growth at Nexl.io

“Alicia gave me what I needed to hear to keep moving forward with organic social and to hammer in on branding. I’m now going to push for more user research, change affiliate plan to include more partnership work, and do more competitor research!”

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Hal Zeitlin
CEO and Founder at Candidleap.com

Satwik Govindarajula

EIR / Growth Mentor at
Fundraising can be an incredibly tedious task while you're already busy scaling your startup. Having run multiple accelerators aimed towards Investment Readiness, I can leverage on my insights from various ecosystems to help you on your fundraising strategy, and lay out action steps for getting towards investment preparedness.

“Satwik is very knowledgeable about Tech and fundraising. He gave me very succinct advice and promised to give follow up feedback on my pitch deck. I’d recommend him to anyone currently working for VC or Impact fundraising.”

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Andrew Ameda
Founder at veritasvision.org

Satwik is obviously incredibly well versed in early-stage startups. He was kind enough to ask precise questions before the call so we could spend the time efficiently. I would highly recommend him for any early-stage companies attempting to validate p/m fit. He is perfect for brainstorming novel techniques to determine p/m fit.

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Ryan Conner
Managing Counsel at Atrium LLP