A man seldom knows his full motives.
When one is trying to find a proof of a mathematical statement, it can be surprisingly helpful to think about the converse of that statement as well. The reason is that an understanding of the converse can give important information about what a proof of the original statement would have to be like, thereby speeding up the search for it.
- Oil and Gas / LNG (economics and legal) + Shipping (carriage of goods - UNDP)
If I were to advise a young kid about career, another angle I would offer is whether the young kid wants the flexibility of an easy life. Some course like pharmacy and dentistry gives you the flexibility of living a less stressful life. If however you want to challenge yourself, don’t do these courses
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;
If you can dream - and not make dreams your master;
If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build ‘em up with wornout tools;
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings - nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run -
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And - which is more - you’ll be a Man my son!
Henceforth, it’s reading articles not for interest but for adaptation into marketing material. Focus.
How much is 5% of your pre-funding company worth?
Not much. In fact, until there’s a funding round you don’t really know what it’s worth.
A funding round is important to entrepreneurs and their employees because it’s a milestone that values the underlying stock of the company.
So, let’s say that a year after you’ve been working as the COO of the company, you and the CEO are finally able to land a funding round.
The funders says they will give you $700,000 in capital for 35% of the company.
What exactly does that mean?
It means that the total valuation of the company after they put their money in will be equal to $700,000/.35, or $2,000,000.
In VC terminology, that’s the post-money valuation. The pre-money valuation is therefore $1,300,000. That’s the post-money valuation minus the value of the cash that is coming into the business as part of the funding round.
So, after the funding round, the valuation is $2,000,000 and you had 5% equity in the company, so now you’re equity stake is worth $100,000, right?
Equity dilution knocks down your percentage stake in the business.
Here’s how equity dilution works in this scenario.
Let’s say there were 1,000,000 issued shares prior to the funding round. In order for the new investors to get a 35% equity stake, they need to be issued new shares.
How many shares?
It’s a simple algebra problem. Let x be the number of new shares that need to be issued. The equation becomes:
x / (1,000,000 + x) = .35
Solving for x implies that 538,462 new shares must be issued to the investors.
The math says that it should be 538,461.5 but there’s no such thing as half a share so we round up. Believe me, investors won’t round down. If there’s something on the table to be taken, they will likely grab it.
So, now the total number of shares in the company is 1,538,462. What your percentage equity stake in the company?
Well, you were allocated 5% of the 1,000,000 shares so you had 50,000 equity shares before the funding round.
After the funding round, you still have 50,000 shares.
So, now, your diluted equity stake in the company is 50,000/1,538,462, or 3.25%.
How much is it worth?
The answer is simply .0325 x $2,000,000. That’s your percentage equity stake times the post-money valuation. As it turns out, your stake is worth $65,000, not $100,000 as you might have thought.
If the company were to sell for $100 million now, after the first round of venture funding is in the bank, you 3.25% stake would be worth $3.25 million, not the $5 million you thought you’d get before you learned about equity dilution.
Notice that there was an easier way to figure out your post-dilution equity stake. You gave away 35% of the company in the financing round, so your 5% was knocked down by a .65 dilution factor — that’s what you got to keep, in effect. So, 5% times .065 gives you the 3.25%. It’s the same answer, but it’s a quick way of calculating the effect of dilution on your equity stake.
Mind you, this is just your first round of dilution. If the company has to do a second round and gives away 40% of the company to new investors, then you’ve got to knock your 3.25% equity stake down by a .60 dilution factor. After that second round, your ownership stake will be down to 1.95%.
Is that good or bad? It depends.
If the post-money valuation on the second financing round is $1 billion, your stake is only worth $19,500,000. Not bad!
If the post-money valuation on the second round is $2,500,000, then your equity stake is only worth $40,950. Given the salary cut you took to get in on the action for this startup, this is a pretty miserable scenario.
Adding insult to injury is the fact that your equity stake’s valuation is not real — it’s just a paper value. In a startup company there’s usually no liquidity unless there’s an exit event of some kind — for example, maybe the company goes public or the company is sold to an acquiring company. At that time, you finally get to know what your stock is really worth.
What’s the moral of the story?
Well, for starters, you can see that somebody who doesn’t understand equity dilution is going to be overly optimistic about their likely take in a startup. They may be more willing to take a lower salary than they should be, or more willing to take a lower equity stake than they should be.
Now that you understand equity dilution, you won’t make that mistake. You’ll properly evaluate potential outcomes and likely funding scenarios and their dilutionary effect on your stake.
As I run through the latest McKinsey insight publications, I got in touch with that old feeling of enjoying the learning.
Recognize your strengths - focus - know where you do not have strengths in
What is your hypothesis; test your hypothesis with a minimum viable construct.
I always wondered whether there could be recorder embedded in my specs such that I could play back whatever I have seen in an immersive way.
Inklings of the new things - hypothetically what do we do next
One more thing or pivot
Work backwards on the empirical evidence you need
Go through the whole process and ask the why. See if there is a more efficient way of getting the correct result.
What kind of hypothesis should I set and how will I test it?