The CILA Labs Partnership Philosophy
“If you are looking for a vendor relationship to simply build your tech idea, you are looking in the wrong place. CILA Labs takes a partnership-only approach because technology ideas need partners who are in it to win it, not, in it to build it only.” - Jared Yellin
Hello Potential Tech Idea Partner!
My name is Jared Yellin and I am the Co-Founder of CILA Labs.
I am not sure if we have met before OR if you have somehow stumbled into our ecosystem, but I am darn happy you are here because there is nothing I enjoy more, other than being a DAD, than taking an IDEA and making it REAL!
I truly live for this experience…
When someone comes to me with an idea on paper or even an MVP solution that a development firm built or an IP document with 100’s of pages or a pitch deck that conveys what they ultimately want to do and in one conversation we transform their idea into a vision.
That’s what we stand to do…
Come with your idea…
Leave with a vision!
But it’s more than just a vision…
From my perspective, I absolutely stand against VISION without an executed plan.
I stand against people talking about what they intend to do versus just doing it.
This is what makes CILA Labs not only unique, but unlike ANYTHING you have experienced EVER before…
We Believe In Long Game…
I am not sure what your experience has been building a technology product, but there have only been two paths prior to CILA Labs and I have experienced both…
Path #1 - You Hire A Development Company
Path #2 - You Build Your Own Team
Path #1 never works.
I mean literally NEVER works. Personally, I don’t know of many positive vendor relationships where the vendor is responsible for the single most important asset of the business, and the reason this is the case is because of what I call the misalignment of values.
Vendor wants to build based on your SOW and get paid as much as possible.
You want to innovate and ideate and evolve your idea beyond your SOW and pay as little as possible.
How can this dynamic EVER work?
For me, it cost me over $2,000,000 and two years of my life because outsourcing development is a transaction and transactions lead to transactional outcomes. This means when the transaction is complete, it's 100% your responsibility to create the outcome AND to sustain whatever the transaction was for, AND with technology, the sustaining and evolving of the platform or SaaS is more complex than the initial build. (Please read this a few times because it’s critically important that you understand why transactions don’t work with technology.)
Once you get a user - it’s an entirely new world, and once you scale (which has to be the vision) to 1,000 or 10,000 or 100,000 or you close an enterprise deal or you need a custom feature or ANYTHING other than the original SOW that you created 4 years ago…
You are STUCK because you had a transactional relationship with a vendor for the most important and critical and valuable asset in your entire business.
And you are REALLY stuck because your vendor might have made a decision that your next vendor disagrees with or can’t work with because there are no coding standards and you are forced to either scrape what you built OR just live with mediocrity!
Outsourcing development does not work and will never work, and I am certain of this not only because of my story, but the countless stories of innocent hard-working entrepreneurs stepping into technology and being chewed up, swallowed, and then spit out with nothing to show other than bruises, emotional distraught, and less money than when they started the journey.
I think you can tell - I am VERY passionate about this subject because of the lack of transparency that exists in the world of development and I stand to demolish the smoke and mirrors that are hurting brilliant tech ideas and never letting them see the light of day!
But there is ONE benefit to the development company…
They have a team waiting for work! (I will revisit this in a moment.)
Path #2 almost never works.
Okay, Path #2 does not charge me up as much as Path #1 did, but it is almost as suboptimal as Path #1 and maybe even worse in some ways.
Building your own development team is VERY time consuming, VERY expensive, and has the potential to slow down your innovation to a screeching halt.
YES, you could get lucky and find the diamond in the rough, but your point of failure when building your own team is usually pretty intense because when your diamond in the rough decides to leave - where does that leave you?!
But here’s the bigger and more immediate concern…
It takes a TON of time to find the right tech people and you won’t know if they are truly right until they are 6-9 months into building whatever you are looking for. What if they suck? Oh my, the countless stories I have heard from people who found their diamond, only to realize that they cut every development corner and built a tech idea which could never scale.
In addition, what if they are AWESOME and build a really good product - do you know how hard it is to scale a development team?
Typically, the great engineer is NOT a greater manager or leader so they won’t be able to help and now you are back at it again, hoping to find many diamonds this time around because if your token dude or dudette is the only glue keeping your idea together, please scale VERY slowly!
And who wants a tech product where scaling slowly is the path you need to take?!
I know I don’t, but this is why Path #2 just does not work...
But there is ONE benefit to having your own team IF you can build one…
They are in it to win it and it won’t be a transactional relationship! (I will revisit this in a moment.)
Path #1 and Path #2 Just Suck!
I understand that we might not really know one another yet, and it might look like I am just poo-pooing the two existing paths to make CILA Labs look like the only path and this could not be further from the case…
I just want your idea to reach reality and scale limitlessly and I have yet to hear a positive story EVER about Path #1 and Path #2 is just HARD and ARDUOUS and RISKY!
This is why we take what we call…
The Long Game Approach
Our only motivation is to create a product/service using the right technology that solves an inefficiency and can scale limitlessly, then to innovate furiously to reach MVP status within 90-120 days, then to have a forever go-to-market strategy with a strong launch focused on getting data and becoming cash flow positive quickly, and then finally to accelerate to a future exit or at the very least strong financial distributions.
We only win when our partners win which allows for our values to be aligned since both parties are committed to the same outcome….MASSIVE SCALE AND IMPACT!
This Is Why CILA Labs ONLY Partners!
We stand to create win-win partnerships within the space of technology.
We stand against transactional SOW projects in the space of technology.
Listen, there is nothing wrong with only needing development support, but if that is ALL you want and think you need then CILA Labs is just not the right company for you.
I am an entrepreneur who builds companies based on my own needs. If I could have gone back to 2013 when I first entered the technology industry and took Path #1 from above, outsourcing development, it would have been a non-negotiable for me to find a company that would do development at cost in exchange for equity in my company. My values and the outsourced development company's values were misaligned and it almost led to my company NOT making it, a massive lawsuit with the development company, and a ton of money and time wasted.
If you choose the development-only path OR building your team, I will honor and celebrate you and be one of your biggest fans.
All that I want is for tech entrepreneurs to WIN because when you WIN the world wins, and I just want to make sure you have the right team, plan, and everything to make your idea a reality.
We only do partnerships because, in my opinion, only partnerships work with technology.
Technology is an extremely unique journey.
Absolutely NOT for the faint of heart.
Filled with the highs of all highs and the lows of all lows.
Yes, you can win big but you can also lose big.
And there is no lonelier path.
And the last thing we would ever consider is allowing you to stand on an island by yourself building a tech company and instead we will go on the island with you as a partner who is absolutely in it to win it in every way which will be explained more in a bit.
Please remember, if partnership is NOT right for you, I respect you deeply and I want you to win. I want all tech entrepreneurs to WIN, but the only way we can help you win is if we partner.
And partner is a somewhat elusive term, so we have decided to define it for you with our expectations of our Co-Founders and what you can expect from CILA Labs as your partner.
We Call It FLAMEwork
The reason why CILA Labs is the PERFECT partner for the right person is because we are committed to keeping you in your flame.
If your flame is being the product owner, then you will be on calls with the Development Team.
If your flame is marketing, then you will work with our Creative Team to drive the process forward.
If your flame is on branding and messaging, then you will work with our Copywriting Team to ensure we are aligned.
If your flame is sales and go-to-market, then you will work with our Sales Support Team to develop a strategy.
Stepping into Tech Entrepreneurship is not for the faint of heart because IF you don’t have a partner, then you are going to need to wear a TON of hats, which will absolutely stifle your ability to scale quickly.
Here’s a partial list of what happens once we mutually say YES to partnering:
Get EIN Number
Issue Operating Agreement
Issue Service Agreement
Issue Management Agreement
Setup bank account
Hire business management firm
Hire legal team
Host at least 2-4 hours of ideation sessions
Build a Tech Team of 14 people
Branding and Website Development
Weekly Tech Dump Sessions
Product ownership and prioritization
MVP Planning and Testing (90-120 day gameplan)
Forever Go-To-Marketing Strategy
12-Month Marketing Plan
Relationship Capital Tree
Exit Discussion and Setup
Ongoing Innovation + Development Of The Tech
Graphic Design and Copywriting
Virtual Summits For Relationship And List Building
Creation of a Pitch Deck
+100 things that end up being unique to your tech company
As you can see from above, we are WAYYYY more than just your development company and instead we represent the following divisions of the tech company that we are launching together:
Customer and Tech Support
But here’s the craziest part…
Our speed is unmatched!
We will go from YES to a new company within 24 hours, to signing an Operating Agreement within 72 hours, to our first innovation meeting, to building the team within a week, to MVP product within 90-120 days.
I can promise you…
Working with a outsourced development company
Building your own team will take at least 6x the amount of time compared to CILA Labs.
This still does not mean we are right for you, but our speed, the reduced risk because of our track record, minimal investment and overall plan is what makes CILA Labs right for almost all tech or soon-to-be tech entrepreneurs.
AND our values are aligned on DAY ONE and your tech team is your tech team FOREVER, so they are IN our new company with you in a meaningful way.
Here’s How We Structure Deals
First and foremost, we believe in WIN-WIN or NO WIN!
This means that we will NEVER say yes to an opportunity unless we are sure that we can help you succeed at a higher level than you would be able to on your own. This is key in our filtering process and we are proud of our ability and desire to say HELLS NO when we are certain it’s not the right idea or partner or HELLS YES when we are positive it is.
Now, let’s get into the mechanics shall we?!
If you were to go down Path #1 from above and hire an outsourced development firm overseas, the blended hourly rate would be close to $100/hour for the development team. If you were to head over to SIlicon Valley OR at least keep the development onshore, you will be paying a blended hourly rate of about $200/hour for Fair Market Value.
When you work with CILA Labs as your partner, we are only having the Co-Founder pay the COST of development and this is INDIA cost.
Just so you remember…
We have a company in India called CILA Incubator Private Limited, which enables us to make each member of our team an employee. This should excite you immensely because each team member is paid exceptionally well, has full health insurance for their entire family, works from anywhere, and is part of the single greatest place to work in all of India. THIS IS YOUR TECH TEAM and...
The blended hourly rate is between $18-$20/hour.
Is your mind blown?!?!
And just so you know, the typical team for your company looks like this:
Lead Backend Engineer
Lead Frontend Engineer
2 Junior Backend Engineers
4 Junior Frontend Engineers
2 Quality Assurance Engineers
2 Cloud Engineers
And your Development Team will be as strong as ANY Silicon Valley tech team - I guarantee it! We only hire the best, we train like maniacs, and we have a culture that attracts the top talent in all of India.
Our goal is to get to MVP status within 90-120 days and we will keep the monthly investment during this time to under $25,000/month for the 14 people listed from above with a blended hourly rate of $18-20/hour. We encourage Co-Founders to reserve $150,000 total for the MVP just in case extra resources are needed, but we intend to CREATE the product/service as inexpensively as possible.
But please realize…
Inexpensive DOES NOT mean cheap.
The Fair Market Value per hour would be $125/hour for each developer. Assuming that the team of 14 people work 40/hours a week for 120 days, the total investment at Fair Market Value would be $700,000. This means you are getting a product valued at $700,000+ for an investment of $125,000 - $150,000 AND your investment is a capital contribution, which is kind of like a short term loan. You get paid back in full before distributions are made to any shareholders.
Besides for the investment of $500,000+ by CILA Labs into your product/service, we are also representing all of the divisions from above which I will restate for your convenience…
Customer and Tech Support
The final piece of the mechanics is the equity split which varies on a company by company basis but CILA usually will get 40-60% of each portfolio company in exchange for the development at cost (which is paid back first), along with all of the other areas that we will 100% manage or partially manage with your support as well.
Do We Have A Deal?
My hope and desire is that you now understand the CILA Labs Partnership Philosophy.
I know this is going to sound bold and maybe even too audacious for you, but if CILA LABS were to take 97% of your company and you kept 3%, I am positive that your 3% would be valued more with us than if you maintain 100% of your idea. Just for the record - we would NEVER do this because we value WIN WIN!
Technology is just NOT for the faint of heart and I am 100000000% certain that outsourcing development will lead to the demise of your idea and trying to build your own team will burn you out.
The likelihood that your tech solution will have bugs is guaranteed…
The likelihood that your tech solution will crash at 2am on a holiday is close to guaranteed…
The likelihood that you will need to build an onboarding process, retention system, customer support philosophy, along with everything else that tech needs is guaranteed…
The likelihood that you will need additional financing is almost guaranteed…
The likelihood that you will close an enterprise opportunity is almost guaranteed…
The likelihood that you will scale massively is almost guaranteed...
The likelihood that I am leaving out 100’s of other nuances, challenges, opportunities, etc. that will happen to your tech company is guaranteed...
And guess what…
CILA Labs is in it to win it for all of the above and more...because...we are PARTNERS and we are on that crazy technology island together.
CILA Labs will do whatever falls OUTSIDE of your FLAMEwork to ensure that the company we are launching together is a massive success. This is why we are sooooo much more than just the developers of your tech product/service. We are your partner and CILA Labs combines the following:
Venture Capital Firm
All packaged into one which we call a Tech Startup Creator, Innovator, Launcher, And Accelerator!
We have ALIGNED values with EVERY partner, we have the team waiting for you, and our speed to Create, Innovate, Launch, and Accelerate is unlike anything you have experienced before.
Plus, you are entering into a family of tech companies and we are committed to connecting each of our portfolio companies with one another via virtual sessions, in-person events, masterminds, and more.
And yes I know - this sounds UNREAL, AMAZING, INSPIRING, etc.
You need to either be a HELLS YES or it’s a no.
Do you want a partner?
If HELL’S YES, then there is no better partner in the world than CILA Labs.
We stand convicted…
We stand ready…
We stand excited…
Because TOGETHER, we truly achieve more!
Thank you for interest and I am excited to hear your HELLS YES or to support your NO.
Live with Intention,
PS: Please visit www.cilapartner.com and complete the form to begin the process. Here we go!!!!