Private Equity Glossary

Founder Vesting

A term imposed on founders of seed and early stage deals in which the founder ownership is subject to a vesting schedule with nothing up front and linear vesting over, typically, four years. The first twelve months ownership is often “cliff” vested after the first year with monthly vesting thereafter. For more mature companies, vesting credit can be applied at the time of investment. The purpose of this term is to protect investors from an early, unplanned exit by the founder and to provide investors with the equity necessary to attract a new management team.

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