From equity crowdfunding to an exit to Mastercard; Meet Edrizio De La Cruz, co-founder and CEO of Arcus 🚀
Edrizio's Odyssey as a founder of color - "Over-mentored and under-funded" 💸
Edrizio De La Cruz on entrepreneurship, crowdfunding and diversity
Edrizio co-founded Arcus (Regalii at the time) in 2013 and exited to Mastercard in 2021. His 9 years’ Hero Journey had an happy ending (selling to one of the biggest financial service players is indeed pretty happy 😄). He shares the learnings that came along the way of his own entrepreneurial Odyssey.
Regalii / Arcus joined YC when the incubator was still in its early-stage.
Edrizio was one of the first founders fundraising via equity crowdfunding platforms back in 2015.
Arcus grew to be the largest bill payment company in America, prior to exiting to Mastercard at the end of 2021.
Edrizio is now sharing his insights on entrepreneurship for founders of colors via his newly-launched newsletter.
Edrizio’s top insights
🚀 Advantage of equity crowdfunding - diversification of your cap table. Hundreds of investors can allocate capital to your campaign, opening up as many opportunities to exchange. From introductions, feedback, subsequent investments, having a wide range of investors give entrepreneurs access to a great support system.
🚀 Be ready for the long haul - the entrepreneurship journey is likely to be ~7-10 years, versus the 4 years some investors allocate capital for. It is important to be prepared for this timeframe when starting a company. The time, effort, resources, commitment entrepreneurship requires (more on this below!) will have to be sustained for close to a decade…something entrepreneurs have to keep in mind.
🚀 Over-mentored Under-invested - founders of colors are too often on the receiving end of advice, but not of capital. Black and Latinx founders have received just 2.6% of VC funding in 2020. As mentioned previously by Kevin Brown, early-stage investments are very difficult to capture at a stage where metrics matter less, and founders are assessed on more subjective criteria. In addition, receiving $50,000- $100,000 of love capital from friends and family is not part of the average founder of color’s journey.
Subscribe to read more insights from Edrizio on; 1) making the most of your investors; 2) how entrepreneurship will transform you in the superhuman version of yourself; 3) being a founder of color.
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