What do you do when you have a 90% feature-complete project in your hands, a sizeable and eager audience waiting for it to be available, angel funding that excludes salaries to the founders, quite literally no savings, a full-time job, and a release in 2 weeks?

I’m a programmer who’s been working with my partners for 9 months on a project that turns out, has serious legs.  Our pre-launch a month ago blew our expectations.  The response on social media has been incredible. It’s a fintech app for my country of origin, which desperately needs it. Without going into details and to sprinkle some (alot of) drama on it, this could very well be the entire point of my existence.

There is much work to do before opening to the GP. We’re expected to open the floodgates soon and I am so swamped with peripheral work that I am afraid of not delivering for a lack of time and focus. I work fulltime on another job and I am a complete wreck with my personal finances and couldn’t even cover 2 months of my rent if I were to quit, let alone eat. We got a little round of angel funding to keep the lights on for 6 months, but it explicitly excludes salaries. It’s only for operating expenses.

I don’t know WTF to do. I have the balls to do just about anything, I just don’t know if it’s sensible to do so… I’m 35 and I would literally be living in Central Park by December, eating at the soup kitchens for god knows how long while we get in the green. Let alone have any social life or pay any other bills.

Anyone been there? Some words of wisdom would be awesome.


  • I thing you must find a new angel!!!

    I am in the same position (We finish the business plan and we had test the product) but in my business plan I have a specific part about why I must take a salary!

    If you are not ok in the money part probably it will be a disaster for you and your project. You must focus only at your product, nothing else!!!

  • Really interested in responses. Very similar position. I thought angel investors require that you dont use seed for salaries?

  • If the company has money in the bank and you need money to live, pay yourself. You are a director after all. You decide. What are your investors going to do, sue you for being oppressed minority shareholders? Don’t think so.

    Of course if investors find out and the company turns out to be a failure, they will attribute this failure to your dishonesty and you will hardly get any money from them ever again. If the company turns out to be a success, nobody will remember you breaking any agreements.

    Also, 90% done project means it’s 50% done. Not sure how 2 weeks to complete something you’ve been working on 9 months is realistic.

    • IS NOT RIGHT TIME TO CREATE A NEW BASE OF BOTH , THINKING FOR ALL FOUNDER OF START UPS FOR NOT ASKING SALARY ANY TIME AND MAKE BASE OF SEED ANGELS WHO CAN OFFER VERY PART / SURVIVAL PACKAGE FOR SUCH CO FOUNDER .

      tHE POINT IS WE WANT LESS START UPS , FINANCIALLY QUALITATIVE AND CHANCES FOR ONLY SUCCESS ( NOT MORE THAN 90% SIMPLY FAILED !!!! )

      IS IT THE WAY TO THINK OUT OF BOX ?????

  • What you need to know is that your investors want you to almost starve. In the collective minds of the investment community, it’s a good thing for you to suffer. It proves that you are serious. They put in cash, you put in your life. It’s a pretty normal arrangement. What we don’t know is the other side of this story.

    If you are in fact about to starve, then have a heart-to-heart talk with your investors. It is not in their best interest for you to have a mental breakdown, starve, etc. But, I’ll warn you that you just admitted that you have (almost) two months rent and a release planned for two weeks. Many investors would find this an optimum scenario, i.e. very high pressure but just enough time to pull it off if you work hard enough.

    Sorry for the lack of sympathy but you should at least realize that this conversation is probably happening amongst the investors when you’re not around.

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