What Our Portfolio Company Founders Say About Us

 

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I want to try to write here the world’s greatest recommendation that any entrepreneur can give an investor because David Gardner and Cofounders Capital deserve nothing less!   We consider ourselves very fortunate to have Cofounders Capital and David as our partners, investors, advisers, and friends.  David is that rare individual who always makes time for anyone seeking help.  He embodies the “pay it forward” belief even if it means that his schedule will have him running 24 hours a day.  For David, “hands-on” means getting into the trenches with his entrepreneurs.  He goes on sales calls with me, modeled our business and helped us figure out a difficult pivot.  I remember once how he helped me compose an email that got one of our highest click-through-rates and even responses from companies like Dropbox and Twitter.  As an adviser, I’ve really valued David’s optimism and ability to relate to the startup struggles.   Our venture feels like a roller coaster ride every week but David’s confidence in us and our venture continues to push us forward. David has been the best coach we could have asked for.  There are investors who just give you money, and then there is Cofounders Capital.  I would partner with Cofounders Capital over any big VC firm, even Sequoia.   Consider yourself incredibly fortunate if you ever get a chance to work with David Gardner and the Cofounders team.  We certainly do.

Juan Porras
CEO @ Founder
Factivate.com

 

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David was our lead investor and he’s been with us since day one.    We meet several times each month to discuss any and all important business decisions.  He edits our decks, reviews our contracts and is always available to jump on a call.   When the deal is really critical, he’s the first one to jump in the car or on a plane to be there when we need him.   We send every local entrepreneur we know to talk to David.  He helps everyone and for those willing to listen, he is the best thing to ever happen to their venture.

Thad Tarkington
CEO and Cofounder
Filtereasy.com

 

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Before he was an investor in FokusLabs, we’d heard a lot about David, his skills, connections and expertise.  We’d also heard a lot about how involved he gets with his companies and how he rolls up his sleeves and gets his hands dirty.  We were certainly wary that someone could live up to such a lofty reputation.  Having worked together with David for several months now, I can candidly tell others to believe the hype – it’s all true. One of the most striking things about David is the incredible speed at which he is able to problem solve and generate creative solutions; it’s nearly instantaneous.   David has mastered the art of leveraging his real-world startup experience, technical expertise and huge Rolodex of connections to quickly overcome challenges big and small.  He’s also fun and easy to work with and helps bring a very positive, calming vibe to team discussions and board meetings. If you’re looking for a hands-on investor who will deliver on promises and help propel your company forward, give him a call; you’ll be glad you did.

Rich Brancaccio
CEO & Founder
FokusLabs.com

 

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David is the definition of an active investor with smart money (and a great landlord thanks to the free office space he provides).  He gets his hands dirty by operating in the trenches because he himself has been in those trenches as an entrepreneur for many years.  At EmployUs, David has brought decades of B2B software expertise joining me on several dozen sales calls, he even stays up late and works on weekends to put together deals.  His involvement has helped us land major accounts who value his experience in the HR software industry and his coaching has helped me become a much more effective salesperson and start-up CEO. I point any entrepreneur I meet to David because he knows what it takes and is always willing to help an entrepreneur at any stage grow their business.

Ryan O’Donnell
CEO & Co-Founder
EmployUs.com

 

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We consider ourselves extremely fortunate to have connected with David.   He challenged us to think bigger which has been a key component of our success.   He connected us to the right people.   From investors to real estate, David always seems to know the right person to help us with every challenge or opportunity.  Even when we were doing demolition and building our brew house system, David regularly showed up with his tool box and worked alongside us late into the night.  He is so much more than just an investor.   We call him a cofounder and friend.

Stuart Arnold
CEO and Cofounder
Fortnight Brewing

 

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David is a strong operator who knows what he’s talking about. He served on our board for several years and never shied away from difficult conversations, often picking up the roles that other board members didn’t want. He also has a gift for interviewing potential employees, particularly in sales disciplines. He’s clear and direct about what he wants, and understands the founder point of view. He’s one of a small number of people in the south that are moving money on a regular basis, and he knows what he’s doing. We’re really glad to have him as an investor and to have him on our board.

Tom Rose
CEO & Cofounder
Testive.com

 

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David is the definition of “smart money” – in addition to being an investor, he has helped us build our sales strategy, get targeted PR, and raise our current round.   From helping with our technical architecture to introducing us to potential customers, he has really stayed involved in our venture.  His encouragement and coaching have been invaluable to us as I believe would be the case with any venture fortunate enough to have David involved.   You can’t go wrong with David on your side.

Vikram Rao
CEO & Cofounder
Tuee.it

 

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David has been an asset to Stealz and I cannot say enough about how grateful our team is for everything he has done for us thus far, and continues to do.   David took the time to actually ride around with me to do sales cold calls together and as such he was the first potential investor to see firsthand the value we could create for our customers.  Beyond the assistance with raising capital, he has been a constant source of support and guidance both for me as a CEO, and for our entire team. David’s expertise with starting and growing successful companies is unparalleled, and he is always happy and willing to share his experiences to help others succeed.  He offers unconditional encouragement and counsel when it comes to making the decisions – no matter how big or small – that help us attain the goals we set for ourselves as a young start-up.

Jim Zidar
CEO and Cofounder
Stealz

 

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We were originally viewing our startup as a B2C venture but David and Tim helped us interpret the feedback we were getting to ultimately create a white label service that retailers to promote to their consumers.  This go-to-market strategy significantly lowered our cost of customer acquisition and lowered the amount of startup capital required.  With the assistance of David and Tim we were able to uncover a B2B approach to our business and significantly increase our chances of success.  They were instrumental helping us form our monetization and financial strategies.  We worked together to create a system to manage our financial needs as well as a strategy to track our metrics in order to understand how our assumptions were changing over time.  Their insight and hands on approach is demonstrative of what I see them doing every day at Cofounders Capital.  We all feel lucky to have them as investors as well as integral members of our team.

Monica Woods
CEO and Founder
Myxx.it

 

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David’s single greatest strength is his consistent demeanor and constant encouragement.   Sometimes we just need to be told that we’re on the right path and doing a great job.  To have an early investor with the track record and experience David has is hugely valuable to us.  He jumps in and rolls up his sleeves, becoming part of the team…and that’s even before he invests.  The first time we went to David’s house, I remember that he had completely dismantled a brick patio himself to repair a water pump.  That sums up his involvement with us – jump in, rip apart, fix.

Tyler Greybeal
COO and Cofounder
CanopyLawnCare.com

 

Although David met with me several times he did not originally invest in my company because we had a slightly different vision for how my technology would best go to market.  A year later when my company was in serious trouble I instinctively reached back out to him.   He helped me navigate back onto solid ground traveling with me to NYC, LA and San Francisco to meet with buyers and potential business partners.  David helped me raise the funds I needed from investors with just the right manufacturing, distribution and international expertise and connections.  When the going gets tough, David is the guy that entrepreneurs will want to have beside them.

Carly Giammona
CEO and Founder
Giammona Collective

 

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David was our first investor at Undercover Colors.  As a young startup company, we had a great deal of passion but very little experience and knowledge about the investment landscape.   As if he were a co-founder, David worked with us to raise our seed round and set up our company with an eye to the future. Beyond the business side, David understands our values and priorities and helped us develop our company culture at Undercover Colors.  He has been great to work with and I would recommend him to any early-stage startup or first-time entrepreneur.

Tyler Confrey-Maloney
CEO and Cofounder
UndercoverColors.com

 

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In the time that I have spent working with Tim McLoughlin at Cofounders Capital he has shown me that Investors aren’t the “bottom line monsters” that so many entrepreneurs make them out to be.  My start-up isn’t even in their fund but Tim has spent so much of his time helping me. He has spent hours with me helping to TEACH me, educate me and put himself out there in a capacity that many investors with a vested interest would not have done.  Their ability to see through inexperienced founder follies and to identify the real value propositions was huge.  So many local investors wouldn’t give me the time of day; essentially checking out after hearing the words “video game” but not Cofounders.   They took the time to ask me the right questions and helped me really laser focus on my pitch/my showcase/the points of differentiation and helped to reshape my company across the board.   Tim’s unwavering support and staying in my corner even when I felt down and out has not only helped get my company to where it is now, but has helped me to grow so very much as not only a founder; but as a person.  Tim & David at Cofounder’s Capital have shown all the hype to be 100% true.

Coy Pitman
CEO and Founder
Discomelee.com

 

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It is incredibly rare to find an investor like David in this region.  As the founder and CEO of several of his own successful startups, he provides an unparalleled amount of insight and coaching.  He has been able to help me in literally every aspect of our business.

Anil Chawla
CEO and Founder
ArchiveSocial.com

 

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David Gardner has provided our team with outstanding resources and advice based on a wide variety of issues.   We checked out numerous investment partners and the big differentiator is his willingness to listen and roll up their sleeves to think through business problems and strategy.  We have found that David himself will dig into the details and the challenges right beside us to figure out better ways to scale results and get traction.  If he doesn’t know the answer himself, he will certainly have a connection with someone who will.  We count ourselves fortunate to be part of this investment portfolio and can trust that we have the support we need to keep pushing when startup life gets challenging.    In many ways, David is the wind in our wings.

Pam Boney
CEO and Founder
tilt365.com

 

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David played a significant role in helping our company identify new market opportunities and we have quickly grown our team from three to thirty-five.  As first-time startup founders, we are continually tackling new challenges associated with a high growth company.  David has been instrumental in helping us hire a strong executive team, work through pricing models, manage a growing staff and more even reminding us when we need to take a little personal time off.  David is much more than an investor.  He is a trusted advisor who is always there for us.

Drew Schiller
CEO and Cofounder
Validic.com

 

 

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We were looking for a unique seed fund because we’re not a “typical” startup.  Our company consists of academics in medicine who have achieved significant success in their respective fields, and we wanted to partner with a fund that understood that while we wanted to achieve financial success, just as important was improving patient care, and to continue our mission of saving lives through health informatics.  While we had opportunities with other investment funds due to our successes to date, we ended up going with David and Cofounders Capital because they seemed to just “get it”.  Many firms didn’t seem to truly understand how health informatics and clinical analytics can transform patient care. They only seemed to get the buzz words, but not the patients and clinical teams behind those words. Not so for CoFounders Capital. They understand that the main mission is to save lives and improve patient care, while also doing this in a profitable and sustainable manner.  For entrepreneurs who have developed novel products while in academia or in the university setting — I would not hesitate for one second to recommend David and Co-founders Capital.

Dr. Iltifat Husain
CEO and Cofounder
Impathiq.com

 

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David is a true “investerator” (investor + operator) and a huge value to any startup company.  The only certainties in a startup company are the highs and lows that go along with the roller coaster ride.  The best way to navigate that is to surround yourself with a great team and stay the course.  I have found that David is an essential sounding board and adviser to navigate these early stages of a startup.

Chas Scarantino
CEO and Founder
Magnus Health

 

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We have been most fortunate to have David as an investor in ProctorFree.  He actually came up with our name.  The technology we wanted to build was very ambitious but David found and vetted an amazing CTO that has more than delivered on our tall order.  David helped us to really crystallize our value propositions and business development targets.  I would strongly encourage other entrepreneurs to discuss their ventures with him.  Even if David does not invest, he always takes the time to try to help out a fellow entrepreneur.

Mike Murphy
COO & Cofounder
ProctorFree.com

 

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Cofounders was the lead investor for our Seed round, this was our first outside raise and we are not in the RTP area so communication and trust were critical. Both David and Tim were great to work with during the due diligence process and focused on customer value and feedback, not needless metrics. They worked diligently with us to build a financial model that we were all comfortable with, and are now very focused on how we work together to scale ParkMyCloud. Our round included several other investors, and their willingness to share data, due the leg work, and the lead the round was very welcome. So far so good, both David and Tim are very willing to get their hands dirty and leverage their networks to help us grow

Jay Chapel
Founder and CEO
ParkmyCloud.com

 

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David has been a fantastic advocate and adviser through our startup process. He gave us very early feedback and advice concerning our idea and continues to do so.  He made introductions galore from potential local investors to even getting Jon Kraft, cofounder of Pandora, involved in helping us.   He has always been willing to provide advice and counsel even in the absence of any compensation.  David’s support in the area was a key reason we were able to get funded.  It seems that most local investors think very highly of him and, as such, follow his queues on investments.

Brandon Magsamen
CEO and Cofounder
CrowdTunes.com

 

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As a first-time entrepreneur, I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to work with Cofounders Capital. David has a wealth of experience and he brings that to each meeting, providing insights that help drive the company forward. I’m humbled by his coaching, which is an invaluable benefit of a partnership with him. I’ve witnessed his prowess on strategic business development calls, as he’s helping us to explore and build new relationships. Tim has also been a great help, adding fresh perspectives and making connections. I was new to the Triangle startup scene when I met David, and I’m really glad that I partnered with him and Cofounders Capital.

Jon Hayes,
CEO & Founder
RewardStock.com

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The Savii team has greatly benefited by having David Gardner and Tim McLoughlin as the lead investors in our seed round.  The Cofounders team is a resource, mentor, coach, sounding board, and cheerleader.   Each of them brings valuable experience to the table.  Despite his numerous investments in a wide portfolio, David is personally involved in the success and challenges we face as we push Savii to meet our next milestones and is generous with both his time and network connections.

Michelle Harper
CEO & Founder
Saviicare.com