Would it be okay for seed investors to invest in a business where the founder and the others in the team don't live in the same country?

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JASON LEMKIN

I think you’re asking if distributed teams are fundable.

Today, the answer is clearly Yes.  5+ years ago it was seen as riskier.

You always want the very core team together, at least, the co-founders … if you can.  At least in the early days.

But I’ve had a lot of success investing in companies with large geographical splits, especially Euro founders come to the U.S.., and developer-centric solutions.  See, e.g., Talkdesk, Algolia, RainforestQA, etc.

It’s tougher in sales.  So it works better if your model, at least in the beginning, isn’t really sales driven.  Inside sales and SDR teams tend to need to work together.

One thing is clear … a distributed team doesn’t work for everyone.  Distributed teams have a larger recruiting footprint, for sure, but a much different management challenge on many levels.

I think the answer today is — “Whatever Works.”

But some, many investors will want to see a bit more proof, the more the team is distributed.  It’s harder to grok than if you can drive the Tesla over to Palo Alto and see everyone in a pizza box-sized team all working together in the same one room office.

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Published on January 29, 2016
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