Home Feature Can you find the perfect co-founder?

Can you find the perfect co-founder?

We chatted with the team at Atlanta-based Kabila to find out

by Maija Ehlinger

Have a startup in mind but not sure if you have all the skills to bring that idea to life?

It takes a lot more than vision to get a startup off the ground. Founding teams need to have technical skills, marketing chops, know how to hire, and be ready for the draining fundraising process. Bringing on a proper co-founder is often a way to go to ensure a startup is on the right track early on.

But finding that “perfect” co-founder match is no easy task. James Oliver, Jr. knows this not only from his time building startups, but also because he’s spent the last few years talking to startups leaders trying to find a co-founder.  

“70% of the founders we spoke with who want a co-founder can’t find one. We work out of Atlanta Tech Village and are friends with many founders there who need a co-founder to either launch or take their startup to the next level,” said Oliver. “Some founders we spoke with told us that not having a co-founder has kept them from getting funding from investors, getting into accelerator programs, and in the worst cases, it kept them from being able to launch at all.” 

To help founders get through this pain point, Oliver and his co-founder Caleb Martinez have been busy building Kabila, an Atlanta-based startup that works as an inclusive matching app for finding the right co-founder.

We last covered Kabila in the summer of 2022 as the team prepared to join the Techstars Austin program. Now Oliver and Martinez are back in Atlanta to launch Kabila for founders building in the city. 

Co-founders Caleb Martinez and James Oliver Jr. at Atlanta Tech Village

The platform has two parts: A co-founder matching tool and a community portal for founders looking to connect and network digitally.

Inclusivity is central to the platform, Oliver added. The app doesn’t show full names or photos to help reduce unconscious bias from creeping in. 

“We also focus on what matters most, like values and skills alignment, with less of an emphasis on where founders worked or went to school, two things that have traditionally contributed to the status quo in startup ecosystems,” Oliver said. 

That can have a big impact on a startup moving forward as well. While venture capital funding has historically been significantly low, teams with gender and ethnic diversity generate 30% higher MOIC (multiples on invested capital) compared to homogenous teams, according to a study from West River Group. 





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