Over the past 2 years, Noah Berkson and Peter Larsen have been operating a staff augmentation company, DevBase, employing software engineers across South and Latin America and staffing them with prominent U.S based companies. They discovered early on that talent wasn’t determined by region and that many of the most talented software developers resided outside the U.S. that were much more economically priced than the U.S. Pair that with the fact that there is a severe shortage of software engineers in the U.S. especially in the markets with higher demand such as San Francisco and Los Angeles.
As the two began to staff an abundance of early-stage, venture backed companies, they realized that many had previously overspent on technology at an early stage, made poor or overpaid technical hires, accumulated mass amounts of technical debt that they would pay the price for later. Ultimately never achieving the traction they needed leading to having to raise more money, “bridge” rounds, or in worst cases, folding the company.
Leaving the question, how could they enable start-up companies to accelerate their engineering and product development while minimizing capital expenditure into technology as it is generally the most capital intensive part of an early stage business.
At the same time, Noah met Raul Ernesto Henriquez in Los Angeles who had just left Cameo as the Head of Strategic Partnerships. As former entrepreneur and active angel investor, Raul had identified the same short falls of inefficiency of capital around technology.
Together, the three created Candor Ventures with the premise to bring mature technical teams into early stage companies and invest the majority of the cost of development in them for an equity stake. Here’s how it works: Candor brings in a full team to complement any existing internal technical employees. This usually includes project management, software engineers, UI/UX and Quality Assurance. They execute a contract for 12-18 months and invest up to 70% of the monthly cost of the team in exchange for an equity position in the business.
As COVID has created uncertainty around fundraising for many companies, Candor has been a breath of fresh air for entrepreneurs with limited funding who need to continue to demonstrate product traction. They have been quick to invest as well, doing diligence and turning around term sheets in an average of two weeks.
Since inception in February of 2020 they have deployed over $2M of human capital into 7 portfolio companies like GameOn, a sports prediction app which has investors like Comcast, Spence, a cannabis payments company partially owned by a Chicago based bank, Burling Bank and CashRent.com a dual sided land leasing marketplace.
In addition to their investment, Candor bolsters an impressive list of capital partners and angel investors who prefer deploying capital alongside them knowing the companies chances of success are much higher.
Candor Ventures, a venture studio empowering start-ups with technology and human capital emerges helping entrepreneurs withstand the pressure of COVID-19.
September 18, 2020 at 23:52 PM EDT