FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What's The Family?
The Family is a fellowship of founders. Twice a year, The Family selects 50 startups from around the world. In exchange for 5% equity, we provide everything you need to build a scalable business: advice, mindset, network & a world-class investor demo day — no matter where you come from.
How intensive is the program?
Running this program remotely requires intensity, we expect founders to be 100% dedicated to building their business during the program.
6 weeks go by fast, but we have found that founders are at their most productive with such a timeframe.
In order to be really transformative for your company, you will have interactions with The Family or other founders in your cohort almost every day.
However, this isn't school; you will spend the majority of your time "outside the program" and executing on building your business: speaking to customers, writing code, etc.
The Family gets 5% equity, how does it work?
We buy 5% of the company at nominal value. This means that you can see us like a minority cofounder. We hold the same type of shares as you do and we pay the same price for them as you did when you incorporated.
As a minority shareholder, you can expect us to be there for you anytime, but of course not full-time.
Why don't you invest money?
The Family is designed to make your company ready to raise funds with the best investors. It lasts 6 weeks, without having to relocate to the other side of the world.
We also like the privileged relationships this allows us to build with founders, who typically see us differently from investors. They see us as long-term partners, there to stand by their side.
Where is The Family based?
The Family's team is fully distributed, but most of us live in Europe.
The Family was born in Europe with global ambition. The shift in work habits that the pandemic accelerated gave us the opportunity to build what we always wanted to offer: a fully remote program addressing founders wherever they are.
Do you intend to keep The Family remote?
We had already operated remotely for a while, but some pieces of the puzzle were missing. The world is increasingly flat when it comes to tech entrepreneurship.
A Ukrainian company incorporated in the US with engineering in Ukraine and sales in the US looks a lot like an American company with sales in the US and engineering somewhere more affordable!
Are we ever going to see each other?
We are always happy to meet the founders we work with; as a matter of fact, we've always said that partying is a serious matter.
If you are around, just let us know. In the same way, we will obviously arrange to meet if we travel near you!
As global health conditions improve, we are also planning to host an annual summer event where all our alumni will be invited.
Do you work with companies in the same industry?
Yes. Though we usually try to avoid working with direct competitors, it is very difficult to guarantee that it will never happen given the number of companies that we work with.
Do you sign NDAs?
NDAs are not common practice in the industry.
No good angel or venture capitalist will sign one. When you share something, you should be comfortable with it being read by anyone, even your competitor.
That being said, it is because we (and investors) commit to secrecy that we are able to build trust and long-lasting brands.
Can I apply more than once?
Yes, you can apply more than once. Some of the best companies we have worked with at The Family applied several times before we brought them onboard!
There are many reasons you might be accepted this time around: it could be that your idea has changed, that the market has matured or simply that we didn't see the depth of the opportunity the first time.
What happens at Demo Day?
Demo Day is the apogee of our program. We still call it Demo Day because founders showcase their work to a large panel of investors, but in practice it's more like Netflix dropping an entire season on a given date.
Hundreds of qualified investors - venture capitalists and business angels alike - are waiting for that day to discover what you have been working on. The product is built for them to be able to efficiently discover what you have been working on and manifest their interest.
It has been designed to maximize your chances of success. The process leads to thousands of intros being made between companies and investors. On average we target an average of 50 intros per company.
My company is not incorporated yet, can I apply?
Yes, and we will even help you incorporate your company where it makes the most sense for you!
We have already raised funds, is The Family still appropriate for us?
Yes, we often work with companies that have raised angel rounds or even small VC rounds.
Me and my cofounders are not working full time on the project, should we apply?
A lot of great companies are started as side projects. It is important, though, that you have a timeline of when you will be able to be full time. Please mention it in your application.
Also, the program is very intense and will require your full attention.
I am not 18 years old yet, can I apply?
Yes, we have often started working with founders who were that young, you can read about some of them on our home page. Long live the Internet!
Do you only work with software companies?
We work with all sorts of companies, as long as you are looking to build a large, scalable business. Software makes a lot of scaling's challenges easier, so it's true that we often work with software companies.
That being said, we've worked with many companies that don't focus on software like brands or media companies.
We're also increasingly impressed by the no-code solutions available on the market, and expect significant value to be created without much coding at all!
Do I need a US company to apply?
No, being born in Europe, we have a lot of experience with various jurisdictions and will look to find a solution regardless of where you are based.
Do I need a technical cofounder?
It depends on what you're trying to build!
If you're setting up a brand for instance, or a media company, you probably don't need a technical cofounder to get started. A Shopify site or a blog should be more than enough.
But it's important that you have someone in the team who can build what you're trying to sell and so often that means having someone with a technical background onboard. That being said, there are more and more tools that allow you to build things without writing any code.