What’s the typical equity split between three founders? How much should the CEO (co founder), CFO (co founder) and CTO (co founder) get respectively?

Although you’ve told us the general of what each person will have as responsibilities and roles, we don’t have a clear picture of the time and ability it takes each person to handle their responsibilities. I am going to give an example that is overly-simplistic. It’s just for the sake of having an easy example. If it takes your CFO 20 hours a week to handle their responsibilities and it takes the CTO 80 hours per week to handle their responsibilities, would it be fair if they both made the same amount of money? Like I said, I know that the roles mentioned and their responsibilities are going to take hours. What I’m illustrating is fairness.

As Brett pointed out, you have to pay close attention because people often don’t tell the truth about their feelings. So, you have to look and listen to not just what is being said but to what isn’t being said.

Think about loyalty. I’m going to presume that your co-founders are really good at what they do (otherwise, why would they be co-founders?). If you want them to stay around for the long haul, be generous. If necessary give them both a little bit more than what you’re getting. This will help show that you appreciate their abilities.

Of course, you could simplify and each of you take one-third. Whatever it is that you all decide to do, though, make sure that it is done in writing. Make sure everyone understands what they will receive and that they understand what their roles and responsibilities.

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