Melbourne entrepreneur offers $2,000 bounty in hunt for co-founder

A Melbourne-based entrepreneur has taken an unusual approach in his search for tech co-founders, offering a $2,000 bounty to anyone whose recommendation is eventually hired.


Marc Harrison, who is building a “powerful” productivity app for the web and mobile, has created a website titled I’m Building a Startup, where he details his search for talented people.


“I’m putting together a team to build a web and mobile app in the productivity space,” he says.


“We have a strong idea and wireframes (that people love), several growth options, a strong business model and funding.”


Harrison, who is committing more than $100,000 to the project, says several outside angel investors are keen to invest, although the start-up is looking for “one or two more”.


In the meantime, Harrison is intent on building the best team possible.


“I strongly believe that the decisions about your co-founders and first employees are the most important decisions you can make in a start-up,” he says.


“For this reason I am offering a bounty of $2,000 to anyone that recommends someone who ends up joining the team.”


Harrison decided to do this via his own website after becoming disheartened by the lack of recruitment platforms for entrepreneurs.


“I don’t think the current systems are set up well for recruiting co-founders. There’s a lot of great ways to recruit employees… but it’s surprisingly hard to find places to advertise for co-founders,” he says.


Harrison is on the hunt for anyone who, in addition to loving start-ups, “writes great code” and is “fun to work with”.


He is looking for a backend developer, a frontend developer, and someone to handle UX and UI.


One team member will also take on the role of chief technology officer, while Harrison will oversee sales and marketing in addition to being chief executive and chief financial officer.


While technical skills are important, Harrison also wants to ensure “everyone in the team likes each other”.


“I once read that you shouldn’t hire someone that you wouldn’t enjoy sitting next to on a long-haul flight, and that rule will apply here,” he says.


“If you’re only available three days a week for now that’s fine, but the goal would be to get that up to four days relatively quickly.”


In addition to their salary, each team member will receive a “generous” equity allocation, Harrison says.


Team members must be living in Melbourne, but be willing to relocate to Silicon Valley should the opportunity arise. More than 20 recommendations have already been submitted.


As for the bounty, Harrison says it will be paid three months after the recommended person starts work, and only if they intend to remain with the team beyond that point.


He says people who submit their own name will still receive the $2,000 prize because “finding the right people is worth it”.


“Having said that, if you’re right for this role you’ll very likely prefer that the money be put in our start-up and you’ll take a few extras shares instead,” he says.


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