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Startup CFO

Experienced part-time CFOs for your fast growing startup

Get the finance help your startup needs!

Healy Jones, Kruze Consulting
HEALY JONES
VP OF FP&A AT KRUZE CONSULTING

Why Your Startup Needs a CFO

Not every startup needs a part-time or outsourced CFO - but if you do, you REALLY need one! Your part-time Chief Financial Officer should be an experienced financial professional who helps your startup set your financial and operational strategy, create and track important KPIs, run your financial systems and reporting, and manage your cash flows and spending.

The best startup CFOs also help with fundraising and investor relations, although the CEO/founder should always be the one primarily engaging with potential investors.

Does Your Startup Need a CFO?

To determine if your startup needs a CFO, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Is my startup having problems with basic bookkeeping and record keeping?
  2. Are my basic financial statements in order?
  3. Do I have detail on KPIs such as customer churn, customer acquisition cost, etc.?
  4. Do I know when my company will run out of cash, and have an understanding of my current burn rate and spend categories?
  5. Do I have a board approved budget that shows me a roadmap of how my startup will achieve its goals?
  6. Does my team have projections and guidance on who and which employees they can hire to meet the company’s goals?
  7. Am I experiencing issues negotiating the financial details of customer or vendor contracts?
  8. Have I prepared the diligence materials that a prospective investor will need to make an investment decision?
  9. Do I have a strategic and financial vision on my long-term pricing, revenue growth scenarios and spending plans?

If you’ve answered “no” to Questions 1 and 2 indicate that you need a good outsourced startup bookkeeper, possibly bundled with a controller. Questions 3 and 4, you should consider hiring someone to help with financial modeling or part-time FP&A. Questions 5 and beyond indicate that you need CFO level help, which, for many startups, can be achieved by hiring a part-time finance professional who understands the industry your business operates in.

What do Fractional Startup CFOs Cost?

A fractional CFO can be an important asset to a startup. They assist with financial modeling and decisions, preparing for board meetings, and handle operational details. Getting part-time CFO really helps the management team.

Typically fractional CFOs have three to four clients and charge one of two ways: An hourly rate, like $250-$350 per hour, or a fixed monthly fee. Those with fixed monthly fees normally allocate one full day per week to your startup.

Find an Outsourced CFO for your Startup

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If you have any questions you can look through our FAQ or Contact Us


Services: True Global Ventures, Bodega Partners, Rollbar, Xenio Systems, WaterSmart Software, San Jose State University, Sand Hill Angels, Cross Coin Ventures, Qvivr, Callisto Media, Menlo Incubator, AppBistro, Fliqz, Inc., TextDigger, Inc., iControl Networks, Pharmacy TV, Outlook Ventures, University of California, Berkeley, Stratex Networks, Arthur Andersen & Co., U.S. Department of the Treasury

Tools: Quickbooks Online, Netsuite, Bill.com, Expensify

Education: The University of California, Los Angeles, Lehigh University

Past Companies: True Global Ventures, Bodega Partners, Rollbar, Xenio Systems, WaterSmart Software

Summary

Steve Bennet is founder and managing director of Bodega Partners and is an active participant in the Silicon Valley entrepreneurial ecosystem as start-up CFO, Angel Investor, and Professor.Over the past 25 years, he has been CFO, investor, and/or board member of over 100 technology start-ups, primarily in the software, Internet, and mobile sectors. CFO roles include Xenio Systems, Qvivr, Callisto Media, Revel Systems, iControl Networks (acquired by Comcast), Appstores (acquired by InMobi), Greystripe (acquired by ValueClick), Fliqz (acquired by VBrick Systems), Valchemy (acquired by IBM), GolfWeb (acquired by CBS Sportsline), Orbital Data (acquired by Citrix), TextDigger (acquired by Federated Media), and Pharmacy TV Network (acquired by RMG Networks). Some of these resulted in excellent financial returns to founders and investors, while others did not.Steve has a passion for both entrepreneurship and education. He has taught entrepreneurial finance since 1995 and is currently adjunct faculty at San Jose State University. Previously, he was a lecturer at U.C. Berkeley. His focus is on experiential education and has developed new courses at SJSU, including the Entrepreneurship Lab (ELAB), Venture Lab (VLAB), Startup Founders and Funders, and the Silicon Valley Experience. He is also on the Steering Committee for the Silicon Valley Center for Entrepreneurship and UCLA Venture Capital Fund. Prior to and concurrent with Bodega, Steve was a Founding Partner at True Global Ventures, Partner at CrossCoin Ventures, Venture Partner at Outlook Ventures, Board Member of Sand Hill Angels, Partner at Menlo Incubator and held various financial and management positions at Bay Logics, Digital Microwave, and Arthur Andersen.Steve earned an undergraduate degree in economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and MBA from the Anderson School at UCLA. He blogs at www.professorvc.com and tweets @ProfessorVC.


Services: Strategic Planning, Cash Management, General & Admin Infrastructure, Organizational Capabilities

Education: HEC School of Management

Past Companies: Twist Bioscience, Agilent Technologies, Hewlett Packard

Summary

Scale2Growth Founder and Managing Director, Solange Bullukian has over 20 years of experience of executive finance roles as CFO, CAO, VP of Finance and Business Development on a global and international scale within both Fortune 500 and start-up companies in High Tech, Computer, Semi-Conductor and Life Sciences industries.


Services: Trading, Derivatives, Fixed Income, Portfolio Management, Capital Markets, Valuation, Hedge Funds, Equities

Education: University of California, Berkeley

Past Companies: Seamless Payments, Harmony Labs, BetterPT, Civic Hall

Summary

Adam has almost 20 years of leadership experience in finance & capital markets, investment management, and business development. For the past several years, Adam has been working as a CFO/advisor for startups and growth-stage companies to provide them with strategic, financial, and operational guidance.


Services: Financial Modeling, Strategic Financial Planning, Corporate Finance, Mergers & Aquisitions, Due Diligence, Variance Analysis

Education: University of Arkansas

Past Companies: BackOps, Sand Hill Angels, Stephens Inc.

Summary

John Shults is the founder of UpRound Finance. John has been the acting CFO for 50+ venture-backed companies across the SaaS, e-commerce, healthcare, and consumer electronics industries. He has helped these Seed through Series B-stage companies raise a combined $185m in equity and debt financing and presented at the board meetings of several premier startups on the east and west coast. John began his career in investment banking and graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Finance from the Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas where he was also a member of the varsity tennis team.


Services: Financial Controls, Strategy, Revenue Growth, Cost Restructuring, Negotiation, M&A Due Diligence

Education: Pace University, State University of New York at Albany

Past Companies: AboveNet Communications Inc., Metromedia Fiber Network, MCI Telecommunications Corporation, IBM

Summary

Doug Jendras is a highly entrepreneurial executive with rich experience in private organizations, including new and emerging ventures. His expertise is in strategic business analysis and execution to achieve the financial goals and obligations of corporate governance and fiduciary duty. Highlights of his career contributions and achievements thus far include: - Identified and implemented controls over distribution of $4B investment, standardized customer-pricing, renegotiated contracts and restructured leadership team to ensure startup's ability to grow. - Rallied the workforce, rebuilt financial and operational functions, and created customer value to increase annual revenue 5x and position a post-bankruptcy telecommunications company for $2.2B acquisition. - Led Network Operations group to achieve revenue targets and grew EBITDA margins to over 40% through lean and shareholder driven management of $90M annual operating budget for 7 consecutive years. - Negotiated business deals with Fortune 500 companies to provide incentives that resulted in the generation of $500M+ revenue stream.


Services: Financial Modeling, Organizational Design, Strategic Planning, Financial Analysis, Due Diligence, Business Development, Business Process Improvement, Change Management, Pricing Strategy, Investor Relations

Education: University of Chicago

Past Companies: Atomic, StyleSeat, Accenture Management Consulting, PNC

Summary

Lea has spent most of her career partnering with executive teams to ensure they intelligently deploy capital and resources, make smart decisions based on data, and optimize their runway. She started her career in corporate finance & management consulting and has spent the last several years working with 15+ startups helping them scale from seed to series C. She thrives in fast paced environments and excel in both details and high level strategy. That means doing everything from building dynamic financial models to developing growth strategies, pricing models, hiring plans and fundraising.


Services: Finance, Strategy, Forecasting, Budgeting, Strategic Planning, Business Planning, Start-ups, Financial Analysis, Financial Reporting, Financial Modeling, Business Development, Go-to-market Strategy, Venture Capital, Internal Controls, Operating Budgets, Restructuring, Analytics, Human Resources, Change Management, Recruiting, Process Improvement, Due Diligence, Cash Management, Strategic Alliances, Revenue Growth, Cost Restructuring, Negotiation, Fundraising, Margin Enhancement, Advisor, Outside Director

Tools: QuickBooks Enterprise, QuickBooks Online, Other

Education: Florida Atlantic University, San Diego State University

Past Companies: UniZ Technology, Ideator, Sanders Advisors, Citizen Healthcare

Summary

With more than 10 years of international CFO experience, Jeremy has a proven record of establishing cross-functional partnerships to deliver stellar results. He is an agile, strategic, and hands-on leader driving operations within analytics, marketing, sales, and business development areas in early-stage and middle market companies. Jeremy has been accountable for budgets up to $130 million and allocating resources to drive organizational and profit growth globally. An active startup mentor, advisor and community leader, Jeremy has also been a startup founder and is particularly adept at streamlining, organizing, and leading company staffs productively.


Services: Financing, Financial modeling, Pricing

Education: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Past Companies: software.com, MCI, cielo24

Summary

Brian Plackis Cheng has successfully scaled B2B tech companies from $5M to $100M+ through IPOs and M&A. Versed in strategy, building products, go-to-market and field operations with deep expertise in AI, messaging and online media. He raised $60M with 5 exits. As the General Manager Americas and Europe led Software.com (messaging co) through IPO and $6.8B sale. Brian works best with founders who are product visionaries who need help scaling organization, business strategy, fundraising and BOD development during accelerated growth. He has lived and worked in Europe, Asia and US.


Services: Strategic Planning, Financial Analysis and Modeling, Due Diligence Preparation, Program Management, Finance Organization Development

Education: MBA, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley BS Electrical Engineering, UCLA

Past Companies: Hewlett Packard, Microsoft, Ericsson, MediaKind

Summary

Bob Togie is a financial executive with extensive experience working with multinational high-tech companies and growing business. Bob partners with business leaders develop strategic plans and analysis, startup operations, and plan for growth.


Services: Capital Raising, Strategic Finance, Financial Planning and Analysis, Mergers and Acquisitions, Accounting Design and Implementation, Investor and Analyst Relations, Contract Review, Bank and Treasury Management, Corporate Compliance

Tools: QBO, Xero, NetSuite, Intacct, Adaptive Insights, Host Analytics, Expensify, Bill.com, Salesforce

Education: Harvard Business School, United States Military Academy at West Point

Past Companies: Goldman Sachs, Accenture, Kana Software, Inc., Singularity University

Summary

James has over 15 years of leadership experience in investment banking, strategic consulting and corporate finance. For the past several years, James has served as Interim Chief Financial Officer for early-stage, technology companies focused on enterprise and consumer SaaS software, artificial intelligence, consumer electronics, medical devices, blockchain-enabled solutions, and advertising technologies. He provides strategic insight to CEOs, founding teams and Boards of Directors by aligning corporate vision and financial forecasts, monitoring performance, conducting financial and operational analyses, implementing and improving processes and systems, and scaling infrastructure and teams. James has partnered with executive teams to raise hundreds of millions of equity and debt capital. James received his MBA from Harvard Business School and BS in Systems Engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point.


Services: International CFO, Financial analysis, Tax, Private equity

Education: UofM, London School of Economics

Summary

Daniel is a seasoned finance professional with 20+ years of international experience in CFO and M&A Advisor roles in technology and telecom sectors. After working in Investment Banking in Europe advising mid-stage companies mainly in tech, Daniel held several CFO roles with operations in North America, Europe and Asia. For the past 5 years, Daniel provided CFO and M&A advisory services to a global family office with a strong focus on IP portfolio based in Asia.


Services: Finance, Strategy, M&A, Communications, Management

Education: BA, UC Berkeley, MBA University of Chicago

Awards: CFA

Past Companies: Qualcomm, Peregrine Semi, Deutsche Bank, Lazard, Coca-Cola

Summary

Jay has spent his career at the intersection of Finance and Technology. He creates shareholder value by constructing compelling corporate narratives weaving together financial data and strategic analysis. He quadrupled the stock price with one company alone in 18 months. He has participated in over 20 IPOs and has written a book on how to take a company public, and counsel companies on how to successfully achieve liquidity events. This powerful combination of skills and experience affords him the ability to catapult shareholder value. On the corporate development side, he has created dozens of M&A target lists through banking and his own consulting practice. He negotiates and closes strategic partnerships that drive revenue and expand addressable markets. Drawing on his experience in China, he helped Qualcomm negotiate and stand up a joint venture with government entities there. He can provide you with strategic options and construct financial narratives to achieve your aggressive global objectives. His expertise is in the external-facing functions of Finance including Investor Relations, Corporate Development and Strategic Corporate Communications. He speaks fluent Mandarin and maintain deep connections in Asia.


Services: Interim CFO/COO, Strategic and Operational Projects including Business Planning, FP&A, Cash Management, Pricing, Corporate and Business Development, Capital Raising, M&A

Education: Stanford University Entrepreneur and Innovation Certificate, MBA St. Mary’s College

Awards: 6 time Telly Award winning Executive Producer

Past Companies: Secret Golf, Procket Networks, Extreme Networks, Bay Networks (formerly SynOptics), Metawave Communications, MeSoft, Kaazing, Scancafe, University of California, Mahindra Genze, Quantivo, Innova Dynamics, Her Universe, Pareto, SDN Central, Wiretap

Summary

Accomplished financial and operational executive with track record of implementing cross functional operations to support startup, rapid growth and multibillion-dollar global corporations. Over the past 25 years has been a CEO/COO/CFO, investor, board member and/or strategic advisor for more than 36 companies. He has held COO and CFO roles at public networking and communications companies (NASDAQ: EXTR, MTWV and NYSE:BAY) with annual revenues up to $2.3B and has had operating budget responsibility from $1M to $2B annually. As a strategic advisor and Interim Executive Officer, he has supported startups and new business initiatives in Internet Security, SDN, Network Storage, SAAS Software, Digital Media, Electric Vehicles, Renewable Energy, AgTech, Marketing Analytics, Telehealth and Personalized Medicine. Vito frequently negotiates business partnerships, joint ventures, distribution agreements and licensing contracts that drive market share, revenue and cost reductions. He has the unique ability to translate a deep understanding of business operations into development of growth strategies, new pricing and business models and the creation of dynamic financial models to drive company performance while providing strategic insights to CEO’s, leadership teams and BOD and aligning corporate strategy, operating objectives and financial performance. Vito is passionate about supporting and mentoring entrepreneurs and executive teams to help bring new business and consumer innovations to market while generating superior investor returns.


Services: Strategy, Cash Management, Budgeting/Forecasting, Coaching, FP&A, Operational and Financial optimization, BOD and Investor presentation and support

Education: Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley

Past Companies: Forte Enterprise Software (Public bought by Sun), VA Software (Public), Dorado, SaaS (Private Series D round bought by CoreLogic), Shaklee, Consumer products (Public), Origin House, Cannabis (Public bought by Cresco Labs)

Summary

As an experienced CFO, COO, and Board member across multiple industries, Mike brings a broad range of experiences to solve problems and/or to identify and maximize opportunities. Mike partnered with executives and cross-functional teams to define and execute strategy. Most recently at Origin House, Mike partnered with the management team to define strategy, mentored the finance team, improved cash management, led the budgeting/forecasting process and implemented a timely financial reporting model. At Shaklee, Mike partnered with the executive team to define and execute strategy that resulted in doubling the size of the business to $900 million through international expansion, new product categories, increased the customer LTV and reduced CAC. Mike takes a hands-on and collaborative approach when partnering with Senior Management to address the needs of the business, whether it is entering new markets, expanding or pivoting the business model, restructuring the business, implementing policy/procedures required to scale, financing, coaching the team or simply contract negotiations. See what others say about Mike’s skills and working style in the recommendation section of his LinkedIn profile.


Services: Business Planning, Financial Analysis and Modeling, Strategy, Capital Raising

Education: Vanderbilt (MBA), University of Scranton

Past Companies: Chronosphere, Advano, Deep Space Industries, Morgan Stanley

Summary

Bernie has spent his career across finance as a CFO and consultant at growth technology companies, over a decade in investment banking, and as a Big 4 CPA earlier in his career. This breadth of experience enables him to partner with executive teams and provide financial, strategic, and operational analysis and guidance. He has experience across verticals, including SaaS, hardware, internet and space; and has worked with late Series A stage through public companies.


Services: Business Modeling & Forecasting, Operational Planning & Budgeting, KPIs, Management & Board Reporting

Tools: SaaS and Consumer Internet (marketplace, e-commerce, subscription, ad-based businesses)

Education: Stanford (MBA), Duke (BA)

Past Companies: TheFind (acquired by Facebook), Snapfish

Summary

Trey provides fractional and project-based CFO consulting services to SaaS and Consumer Internet companies. For the last fifteen years, he has helped clients make data-driven financial and operational decisions and achieve great results. If you are a CEO who needs an experienced CFO and strategic thought partner, he could be a good fit for your company.


Services: Strategic planning, Financial models for fundraising, Int'l expansion

Tools: Quickbooks, NetSuite, Adaptive Planning, Bill.com, Expensify, Carta, Gusto

Education: MBA, Santa Clara University, BA, University of the Pacific

Past Companies: Macys.com, Bella Pictures, Rafter, Blurb, Peerspace, Freestyle VC

Summary

Drawing on over three decades of experience serving as both COO and CFO at multiple venture-backed startups, Gene pays attention to detail without losing sight of the overall strategic direction and translates financial goals into company and individual KPI’s aligned with the strategy. Less is more when it comes to focusing teams on the most important drivers of the business. He has successfully raised over $400M in equity and debt financing rounds at companies where he held financial leadership positions and managed revenue growth from zero to $800M during his tenure.


Services: Capital Raising (debt or equity), Strategic planning, Modeling , Forecasting

Education: MBA, University of Chicago, MS, VCU, BS Virginia Tech

Past Companies: Price.com, Centric Learning, PRYNT, UNYQ, Nitros

Summary

Deepak has been a CFO for the past nine years for startups at many stages. He is also part of the CFO group at Bessemer Venture Partners. He was a Managing Partner at Blue Bear Ventures, a UC Berkeley Deeptech fund, and advises entrepreneurs at the UC Berkeley Haas Business school. He has fourteen years of venture investing experience across four institutional funds. Prior to investing, he was part of 4 medical startups as either an entrepreneur or in management roles, having two exits with Cepheid (NASDAQ: CHPD), a molecular diagnostic company, and Neuropace (NASDAQ: NPCE), a medical device company. He holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Tech, an MS in Biomedical Engineering from Virginia Commonwealth University, and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.


Services: Fundraising & Financing, M&A, Turnarounds & Restructurings, FP&A and Strategy

Tools: NetSuite, Oracle, QBO, SageIntaact, Xero, Bill.com, SQL

Education: Columbia University, University of Michigan

Past Companies: Solera, Branded, Flow Commerce, RadioShack, The Royal Bank of Scotland, Credit Suisse

Summary

Nitin has 20+ years of finance experience with over a decade in the software/SaaS and eCommerce industries. He has served in a CFO capacity for a dozen technology companies, leading finance departments at multiple VC and PE-backed businesses with revenues ranging from $5 to $500+ million, employees ranging from 50 to 9,000, and global operations spanning the US, Europe and Asia. Nitin has structured and negotiated complex equity and debt financing exceeding $360 mm as well as M&A transactions of ~$500 mm, leading the post-merger integrations on over a dozen acquisitions.


Services: Budgeting, Forecasting, Venture Raises, Annual & Strategic & Talent Planning, Progress Monitoring, Operations, Human Resources

Tools: Quickbooks, Intacct, Adaptive Insights, Jirav, Vena, Bill.Com, Gusto

Education: Princeton University (BA), Yale University (MBA)

Past Companies: Commons, Ridwell, BookNook, Edstruments, Charter School Growth Fund

Summary

Jon started his career in retail at Gap Inc., where he completed their executive training program and was on the founding team for oldnavy.com. With a deep interest in closing the opportunity gap for low-income students and families, he then pivoted to education reform, where he spent the last two decades in senior leadership roles at venture philanthropy-backed organizations that challenged the status quo and successfully achieved meaningful scale and impact  Of late, he has been focused on advisory and fractional COO, CFO and Chief of Staff work with early-stage venture capital backed climate change and EdTech start-ups like Ridwell, Commons, BookNook and Edstruments. Regardless of the sector, his passion and strength center around helping rapidly growing organizations develop the financial and operational systems, processes, and talent practices necessary to scale with excellence. 


Services: Finance Team Oversight, Budget Support, Long Term Strategic Planning, Monthly/Quarterly Financial Reviews, Expense Analysis, Expansion Analysis

Education: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, BBA

Past Companies: Bear Stearns, JCrew, Madewell, Rockets of Awesome

Summary

Macy provides strategic financial guidance to businesses who need the support of a CFO without the long term commitment.  Her goal is to support companies that are at a pivotal point where financial expertise, direction and discipline are needed to scale, but that aren't yet ready for a full-time CFO.


Services: Financial and Legal Management and Strategy and Execution, Capital Formation and Management

Education: Boston University, LLM Taxation, University of Oregon Law School, Hampshire College

Past Companies: Hapara, Inc., Probitas Partners, Grant Thornton, BigFix, Inc.,

Summary

David has over 20 years of leadership experience in finance, strategic initiatives, and organizational leadership, typically serving as the Chief Financial Officer and/or Chief Operating Officer for early and growth stage, technology companies focused on B2B and enterprise SaaS software, and technology enabled manufacturing. David has extensive experience in capital formation, M&A, growth strategy development and execution and optimizing financial operations and functions. He combines financial and business acumen, with deep experience and emotional intelligence. David seeks to optimize performance and develop teams and systems to enhance shareholder value. David’s breadth of skills combines strong forecasting and planning, performance analysis and effective scaling. In his roles as CFO and COO David has completed multiple capital raises and debt transactions, M&A transactions and organizational development efforts. David has two law degrees, and has been a thought leader on ESG principles and execution.


Services: Set up & run all financial operations from accounting through investor reporting, Lead fundraising efforts, Assist Founders in setting OKRs & finding business model drivers

Tools: QBO, Xero, Netsuite, Mosaic, Fathom, Jirav, Bill, Glean, Bamboo, Justworks, Rippling, Gusto, Salesforce, Hubspot, Slack, MS Office.

Education: MBA from NYU, CFA, MsC from Delft, Certified CCO

Past Companies: Wethos, Agora, Overproof, Bryzos, Kensu, Carketa, Tangelo, Spark, Toke

Summary

Patrick is an accomplished professional with 25 years of experience in Angel investing, venture capital, private equity, and building startups from seed-to-scale. Always working closely with passionate founders, he takes on the embedded CFO/COO role in order to help set strategy and execute rapidly. He has specialized expertise in Enterprise Saas, Cannabis, and Crypto. Patrick helps set the roadmap to a repeatable, scalable business model by identifying key drivers, building out the executive team, and implementing the strategy-tactics-initiatives-tasks waterfall to hit quarterly objectives. Additionally, he leads the finance & operations team on the acquisition of cash resources (fundraising) and proper management thereof (financial operations). Patrick is a Mosaic Preferred Partner, having led & run many strategic Mosaic implementations for his clients. Patrick thrives on transforming complex market opportunities into clear business goals. He enjoys fast-moving competitive environments with discontinuous change. He has worked in remote-first, multicultural, and cross-functional teams for over 25 years.


Services: Fundraising, Financial Modeling, FP&A, Commercial Development, M&A, Service Provider Management

Tools: QBO, Adaptive, Gusto, other payroll & project management tools

Education: Harvard Business School, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Past Companies: Genentech, GE Ventures, Amgen, Codexis, Various institutional & corporate venture firms

Summary

Diana has over 15 years’ experience as an entrepreneurial investor and operator in technical roles across the Fortune 500, product and financial roles at early-stage companies, and company creation and interim portfolio roles at venture firms. Over the last 10 years, Diana has incubated five companies which subsequently raised over $150M in venture capital financing and was co-founding COO of three. Three of the five companies exited via M&A or tuck-in; two have raised subsequent rounds of financing. Diana has recruited over 10 C-Suite executives as well as held multiple Board and Advisory roles in the early-stage ecosystem. Earlier in her career, Diana gained P&L management experience of $100M+ and was Codexis’ first direct-report to the CFO imminently after its IPO. Diana also has familiarity on the factory floor, both at Genentech and Rohm and Haas (now Dow Chemical Company), where she was an engineer.


Services: Interim CFO/COO/CSO, Special projects and program management, Transformation, Treasury, FP&A/Budgeting, BoD/Investor relations, Vendor/Contract/Legal management, Organization development

Tools: QBO, Rippling, Gusto, Bill.com, Expensify, Carta, Salesforce, Workday, Monday.com, Jira, Hubspot, Slack, Google/Microsoft suites

Education: MBA, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, BA, Economics, University of Southern California

Past Companies: JPMorgan Chase, FOG Ventures, Truly Technologies, Elodie Games, Skyryse, Fisher Investments

Summary

Nym is an entrepreneurial, operationally-minded CFO/COO with a wide history across 10+ major industries spanning over 20 years. Focused on execution, Nym utilizes the tools of the finance function to provide clarity for senior management decisions based to drive strategic business outcomes through diligent execution and a focus on results/KPIs. He has founded 3 of his own companies, and worked in environments from 10-person Bay Area Series A startups to 270,000-person New York Fortune 10 mega-caps. Nym is fundamentally pragmatic in his partnership with leaders and founders, and sees finance and operations as the two functions that drive the core of any successful business.


Services: Strategic Planning, Financial Analysis and Modeling, Due Diligence Preparation, Capital Raising, Strategic Finance, Financial Planning and Analysis, Mergers and Acquisitions, FP&A

Tools: QuickBooks Enterprise, QuickBooks Online, Other

Education: Dual Master’s Degrees in Engineering and Financial Management Moscow State University of Electronic Engineering

Past Companies: Save, UniCredit, Societe Generale

Summary

A seasoned CFO with a 17-year track record in the financial industry, including 10 years in senior positions, Stanislav has proven proficiency in overseeing complex financial operations. Executed over ten major deals (LBO and Private equity) with a total deal amount exceeding $500M+ in 3 years. At the age of 29, he became a Senior Partner at one of the largest mezzanine providers in Eastern Europe.


Services: Strategic long range planning and annual budgeting, Board of Director/Investor relations reporting, Unit economics and as-a-service Pricing, Business Process Transformation and Automation, Datacenter economics, Strategic Finance, Month End Reporting, GTM, Product and G&A Finance

Tools: NetSuite, Hyperion, SAP, Oracle, BusinessObjects, Tableau, Salesforce, Workday, Anaplan, Google/Microsoft suites

Education: MBA (Finance and Accounting) at University of Texas at Austin

Awards: On Belay Award (VMware), Peer and Spot Bonuses (Google), Above and Beyond Award (Dell)

Past Companies: Google, VMware, Oracle, Intuit, Confluent (Silicon Valley), Discover Financial services (Greater Chicago Area)

Summary

Rashi has 15+ years of experience in high growth tech companies like Google Cloud, Confluent, Intuit, VMware and Oracle. Over the span of her career, she has helped scale the businesses to 10x and hired and led high performing teams. Rashi is an “as-a-service” and usage based business finance expert. Her expertise includes long term strategic planning, driver based annual planning, forecast variance analysis, unit economics and marginal unit costing, sales incentive and compensation planning, sales capacity modeling, board of director reporting, quarterly earnings reporting, and monthly close reviews with CxOs. Rashi believes that becoming a trusted partner with business leaders is a cornerstone towards building a high growth profitable business. She starts with business strategy first, then maps it back to finance fundamentals and operational plans and then rolls up her sleeve to create detailed finance models, business processes and systems implementation to help grow your business to the next level. If you are interested in growing your business with a passionate, curious and rigorous finance partner and leader, Rashi will be a great fit for your business needs as a fractional CFO.


Services: Long-Range Strategic and Financial Planning, FP&A/Budgeting, Fundraising, BOD/Investor Relations, Financial Modeling, Unit Economics/Margin Enhancement, Cash Management, Inception Audits, Due Diligence Preparation

Education: Harvard Business School, Duke University

Past Companies: Shipt, Mural, Orca Bio, Carewell, Genentech, UBS

Summary

Drawing on 20+ years of experience as a venture investor, startup operator and investment banker, Jing partners with founders of early-stage companies to execute on their visions by implementing an operating plan aligned with a milestone driven financing strategy. She has helped healthcare, SaaS, ecommerce and marketplace startups scale from Seed to Series B by being a strategic and hands-on CFO, who sets the cornerstones of the roadmap to growth, coaches executives through fundraising, and builds the financial infrastructure to deliver results. Essentially, she collaborates with early-stage companies to develop the polish and the fundamentals expected by institutional investors.


Services: All Board level finance matters (meetings, KPIs, dashboards, industry benchmarks), Hands on leadership and building of Finance/Acctg/HR organization, Equity/Debt fundraising (Pitch decks, DD, docs, etc.), Planning/budgeting/cash out, scenario analysis, M&A (buy/sell) and valuations, Cap Table management/strategy, Pricing, Compensation/equity/commissions, Banking and vendor relationship, Best-practice policies and procedures

Tools: Office Suite; GSuite; QBO; Netsuite; Carta; multiple AR/AP platforms; multiple HR/PEO platforms

Education: MBA San Jose State University

Past Companies: Quixey, Sibly, Buysight, Multiple Stealth companies, Sonantic, SixApart/Vox, Fortify Software, Podshow/Mevio, Garage.com, Agile Software, SimpleStar/Photoshow, Packeteer

Summary

High energy, high integrity business partner dedicated to helping companies achieve their desired outcomes at both strategic and tactical levels; Can rapidly learn about your company and work with the organization to address the most critical business and finance issues and use all necessary means (esp. data + analytics) to guide well-informed decisions; Helped raise >$900m+ and oversaw multiple liquidity events with many current & former clients still in-play; Work effectively with all stakeholders: management/employees, board and investors; Strong belief in collaboration and communication across all levels; adept at working in a quickly changing environment.


Services: CFO Advisory, Strategic Planning, Financial Analysis and Modeling, Due Diligence Preparation, Capital Raising, Board/Investor Management, Financial Planning and Analysis, Mergers and Acquisitions, Deal Structuring, Pricing & Commercial Operations

Tools: Oracle, SAP, QBO

Education: BS Information Technology with minor in Finance from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Past Companies: General Electric (Corporate, Capital, Oil & Gas), SpeedCast, Anuvu, Brazos River South

Summary

Devin is founder and Managing Partner of Brazos River South, bringing 20 years finance experience. Big company trained, small/medium company seasoned. Track record of driving profitable growth. Outcome driven approach, with perspective that the financial outcomes are driven by product excellence and operational efficiency. I bring the learnings of a CFO who has grown a startup from $0 to $10M, scaled a business from $7M to $75M, and ran a $584M energy division. I aim to be a great partner in helping you reach your business vision and objectives.

Startup CFOs - Partner with kruze

Kruze clients are industry leading, funded Delaware corporations - if you are an experienced startup professional who consults with fast growing companies let us know! We’d be happy to learn about your experience and see if adding you to our network makes sense.

What is “Kruze Certified”

Kruze works with hundreds of startups every year, helping with everything from taxes to payroll to accounting to fund raising. We’ve helped many of these fast-growing companies find part-time CFO help, and we once we are comfortable with a finance professional’s qualifications and experience, we add the “Kruze Certified” designation! If your company needs senior finance help, talk to us today!

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When Does a Startup Need a CFO?

by
Vanessa Kruze Founder & CEO, Kruze Consulting

Vanessa Kruze

Founder & CEO, Kruze Consulting

What Type of Finance Professional Do You Need?

Understanding whether your startup needs a CFO or a Controller is a crucial step in building a strong financial foundation, and can help you avoid brining in someone who is the wrong fit for your company.

Figuring out which role you need depends on your current financial needs and strategic goals. If your startup requires meticulous day-to-day financial management, compliance oversight, and robust internal controls, a Controller might be the right choice. Controllers ensure financial accuracy and help build a solid accounting foundation.

On the other hand, if your startup is at a stage where strategic financial planning, fundraising, and investor relations are critical, a CFO could provide the leadership needed to drive growth and scale your business. CFOs bring a strategic perspective, helping to shape long-term financial strategies and manage capital effectively.

For a detailed comparison to help you make an informed decision, visit our CFO vs Controller page. This resource outlines the key responsibilities and skill sets of each role, guiding you to determine the best fit for your startup’s specific needs. Whether you’re looking for strategic financial guidance or day-to-day financial oversight, we can help you find the perfect fit for your team.

I’m going to break this up into three parts, because I believe there are at ways to look at a CFO…

At what point does a self-funded startup need a CFO?

I’ll view “self-funded” as akin to a bootstrapped small business. The term startup tends to designate high growth companies that have been backed by angels or VCs. Being a self-funded small business - in my humble opinion - is much more difficult. You may not be as flush with cash as VC funded startups, but you also haven’t given away any equity/power in your company. So when should a small business hire a CFO? Only when they a) need one and b) can afford one. At this point, all you likely need is a financial model. If you’re in need of securing debt/equity investment, reporting to a board of directors, or expecting an acquisition… then consider hiring an interim CFO. A full time CFO will run you 240K+.

At what point does an angel or VC funded startup need a CFO?

At least 3 months before a new fundraising round. There’s a lot of preparation that goes into process, and a startup CFO will be essential as the CEO is often hair-on-fire busy courting potential investors. A CFO will build the financial model, track KPIs, prepare the financials, and will leverage angel/VC relationships. After the fundraising round, an interim CFO’s workload decreases dramatically. CFO level work then focuses on benchmarking the financials and KPIs to the financial model that was presented to the investors, and providing detailed reports of this progress at the quarterly board meetings. Intermittent startup CFO requests include advising on equity compensation, venture debt, investor relations, etc. If you’re raising a Series A, B, or C round, an interim CFO can help. Past Series D, a startup usually hires a CFO to manage the now growing accounting department. If you’re thinking about an IPO in the near future, you’ll need a full time CFO.

At what point does a public company need a CFO?

Before the company goes public! These are the true heroes, and the real embodiment of a CFO. They face relentless pressure from the CEO, Employees, Shareholders, and Wall Street. Their decisions can make and break the company… and the lives of thousands.

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Startup CFO FAQs

What does a startup CFO do?

The main responsibilities of a startup’s CFO are to:

  • manage the startup’s financial reporting
  • build and maintain the startup’s projections and budget
  • execute capital raises, like venture capital rounds
  • handle legal and negotiations for the CEO, such as leases, insurance, etc

The CFO should be helping translate the company’s metrics into insight that the rest of the management team can use to make strategic decisions - important decisions like when to make additional hires, when to ramp up sales or marketing spend, how potential contract will impact unit economics, etc.

Learn more about what does a good startup cfo do​​​

Should seed stage startups have a CFO?

Most seed stage startups do not need a full time CFO. While it’s tempting for a “business” founder to take a Chief Financial Officer title, this is probably not the most important role for most seed stage companies to have filled with a full time person (COO may be a better title for that business founder).

A part-time CFO or experienced accounting CPA firm is a better fit for most seed (and most Series A startups) because they can be an experienced, frugal way to get the output that you’d expect from a CFO without the cost.

What to look for in an outsourced CFO?

Not every fast-growth company needs an outsourced CFO, but when it’s time, it’s time! Here are some of the key items to look for when hiring a senior finance professional on a contract basis:

  • Look for someone who knows your stage - a company gearing up to get ready for a $100 million venture raise is very different from a company with more modest capital needs
  • If you operate in a speciality industry, you may need a specialist. Some industries, such as biotechnology or technology hardware manufacturing, have unique capital and cash flow needs. Finding an outsourced expert can help you craft a financial strategy unique to your business.
  • Get someone who can provide the right amount of attention for the foreseeable future. Fractional CFOs are in high demand, and finding someone who has enough time to dedicate to your business can be a challenge. Working with someone who doesn’t have the bandwidth to give you the attention you probably need maybe a mistake.
  • Choose a partner who will compliment your leadership and management style. For example, if you’re not a details-oriented CEO, finding a finance leader who is comfortable diving into the details may be best.

Startup CFO Services

Expect your outsourced Chief Financial Officer to help with the following

  • closing the monthly books and managing financial reporting
  • manage the budgeting process and the financial projections, including keeping track of the company’s expected cash out date
  • fund raising logistics, advice and coordination, including supplying investors with financial and other due diligence material
  • contract negotiation for items like new leases, large vendor contracts, etc.
  • manage the company’s cash and cashflow/burn, and make recommendations around hiring or changing the burn rate.

Basically, a startup CFO’s services will include anything and everything the company needs to help translate the founders’ vision into realty from a financial lens.

Outsourced CFOs near me

A common question we get is “how to I find an outsourced CFO near me?” Kruze works with outsourced CFOs near most major tech centers in the United States, including San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Southern California, New York, Austin (Texas), Boston (Massachusetts) and more. If you are looking for an outsourced CFO near you, see if Kruze can help you!

A Strategic CFO Partnership

Based on your startup’s needs, Kruze Consulting can provide the services of an entire in-house financial team at a lower cost than staffing your own finance department. As a Finance as a Service (FaaS) provider, Kruze can provide you with CFO and executive-level services, giving your startup the crucial financial reporting and strategic advisory services you need. Our seasoned financial experts can support your startup throughout all stages of its growth, and we have the systems and infrastructure to quickly onboard your company and provide you accurate, reliable, and timely financial services.

Should Startups Hold Exit Interviews with Departing CFOs?

When a startup’s VP of Finance or CFO decides to move on, board members and investors should conduct an exit interview. Such interviews provide invaluable insights into the inner workings of the company, potential areas of concern, and possible operational improvements. It’s not just about identifying issues; it’s about understanding the myriad reasons behind a finance professional’s departure, whether due to internal disagreements, better opportunities, or something more dangerous. At the heart of the matter, VCs and board members bear fiduciary responsibilities. Their duty is to ensure the startup’s financial infrastructure remains intact and that operations are seamless. The departure of a financial figurehead, like a CFO, can be indicative of deeper operational issues or even potential fraud. Hence, holding exit interviews becomes crucial. While it may not be necessary for the entire board to be involved, at least one member should be. The insights gained from these interviews often transcend pure finance, shedding light on the broader operational aspects of the startup. Therefore, it’s imperative that exit interviews become a standard procedure, ensuring the well-being and transparency of the startup ecosystem. Whether it’s a full-time CFO or a fractional one, understanding the reasons behind their departure is paramount for the future success and stability of the business.

Who Is Responsible for Hiring the Startup CFO?

The final decision on who to hire as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) is often made by the startup’s CEO. However, this choice is seldom made in isolation. Given the critical nature of the role, the board of directors usually plays an influential role in the selection process. This collaborative approach is crucial for several reasons:

  • Board members will likely want a rapport with the CFO to gain unfiltered insights during challenging times.
  • The board seeks to ensure transparency, verifying that issues are not being downplayed or concealed.
  • Having another point of contact within the startup, besides the CEO, can serve as a useful channel for communication and de-stressing.

Advice from other team members like the operations team and key personnel such as the Vice President of Finance, Controller, and Staff Accountants is often sought during the CFO hiring process. Since this hire touches so many parts of the team, it makes sense for key members to have a say in the hiring process.

Startup CFO Advisors 101

When hiring a startup CFO advisor, a founder should look for someone who has experience working with early-stage companies and understands the unique challenges they face in their particular industry and aligned with their specific business model (i.e. SaaS, AI, biotech, etc.). The CFO advisor should have a strong background in finance and accounting, as well as a deep understanding of startup metrics and venture capital funding. They should be able to provide strategic financial guidance, help with budgeting and forecasting, and assist with fundraising efforts. Additionally, the CFO advisor should be able to manage and analyze the day-to-day financial tasks such as bookkeeping, payroll, and tax filings - they probably shouldn’t be tasked with those responsibilities, since they are time consuming and can be done more cheaply by a provider like Kruze, but they should take on the day to day management of them, saving the founder a lot of time. It is not necessary for a CFO to have a CPA or CFA, but having these certifications can demonstrate a higher level of expertise and credibility. Ultimately, the most important factor is finding an advisor who is a good fit for the specific needs and goals of the startup.

Client testimonials

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We're huge fans of Vanessa and the folks at Kruze Consulting. They set up our books, finances, and other operations, and are constantly organized and on top of things. As a startup, you have to focus on your product and customers, and Kruze takes care of everything else (which is a massive sigh of relief). I highly highly highly recommend working with Vanessa and her team.

Vivek Sodera

Vivek Sodera

Co-Founder @ Superhuman

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Prior to Kruze, as a remote-first team, we were weighed down by a lot of the bureaucracy involved with having a distributed workforce. Kruze has supported us above and beyond basic accounting needs by ensuring we have everything we need to expand and support our team wherever they may be located

Zack Fisch

Zack Fisch

Pequity's Head of Operations & Legal

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Avochato has been growing rapidly in the past year – in fact, too quickly for us to keep up with books, taxes, and budgeting for growth. Partnering with Kruze Consulting has been fantastic to manage, track, and analyze our finances while we continue focusing on building our customer base. Kruze’s team knows what startups need.

Alex De Simone

Alex De Simone

CEO @ Avochato

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Everybody, go to Kruze Consulting. They do a great job. I personally can tell you, they've done a great job for our companies, including Calm.com. I'm sure they’ll do a great job for you.

Jason Calacanis

Jason Calacanis

Angel investor

About Us

A CPA Firm Specialized in Startup Accounting & Finance

A CPA Firm Specialized in Startup Accounting & Finance

Startups are our niche, and our passion. Our clients have raised over $15 billion in VC funding. We are one of only a few outsourced accounting firms that specialize in funded early-stage companies - we only offer financial and tax services to fast growing startups in the Pre-Seed, Seed, Series A, Series B and Series C stages.

The Right Accounting Partner for Your Startup’s Next Round

The Right Accounting Partner for Your Startup’s Next Round

We know how to de-risk your startup’s next venture capital round. Our team makes sure you are ready to fly through your next VC’s accounting, HR and tax due diligence. And when you use us as your bookkeeper, we set up and keep up-to-date a due diligence folder so you can get that next round of fundraising.

A Leader in Cloud Accounting Software

A Leader in Cloud Accounting Software

Our practice is built on best of breed cloud accounting software like QuickBooks, Netsuite, Gusto, Rippling, Taxbit, Avalara, Brex, Ramp and Deel. Technology makes us more efficient, saving our clients money and letting us offer higher value services like FP&A modeling, 409A valuation, and treasury advice. Startups deserve to work with CPAs using modern software.

Trusted by Top Venture Investors

Trusted by Top Venture Investors

Top angel investors and VCs refer Kruze because they trust us to give the right advice. Our clients are portfolio companies of top technology and Silicon Valley investors, including Y-Combinator, Kleiner, Sequoia, Khsola, Launch, Techstars and more. With us, your books and taxes are in order when it’s time to raise another round of venture financing.

What types of startups does Kruze Consulting usually work with?

What types of startups does Kruze Consulting usually work with?

Kruze Consulting works with funded Delaware C-Corps. Our clients have secured Pre-Seed to Series C or Series D funding. We look to partner with our clients, going beyond the typical outsourced accounting relationship and seeking to provide a higher level advisory role. We feel honored to be a part of making the world a better place, even if it’s one debit and credit at a time.

Accounting, Finance, Taxes, & Payroll all in one solution

Accounting, Finance, Taxes, & Payroll all in one solution

Startup CFO services, startup accounting and bookkeeping services, startup annual taxes, expense reports, payroll, state sales taxes: we've got you covered. Our software provides custom tailored dashboards that can be provided weekly or monthly, depending on your preference and plan. Founders are often so busy building their company that they don’t have time to take care of their finances. Traditionally, these companies have had to work with a basket of people to get their work done, including bookkeepers, accountants, AP clerks, CFOs, consultants, and tax accountants. At Kruze Consulting, our founders have one point person, saving time and money.

READY TO CONNECT FOR A FREE CONSULTATION?

We are the experts at helping seed/VC-backed Delaware C-Corps with their accounting and finances!

Talk to an experienced accountant, not a generic sales person

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Alex Janeck
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Edith Silva
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Randy Hall
Viz AI

$250M+ VC Funding Raised


"I had a great experience working with Kruze Consulting when we raised Series A. They know what VCs need to see, and how to present a startup’s books and finances. If you are going to raise venture capital, you need experts like Kruze."
Chris Mansi

Chris Mansi

CEO

Startup Venture Capital Assistance

With former venture capitalists on staff, our team is here to help you navigate the fundraising process and manage your board of directors

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Scott Orn
COO | Former VC
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Healy Jones
VP FP&A | Former VC
Pequity

Scale Remote Operations & Team


"Kruze has supported us above and beyond basic accounting needs by ensuring we have everything we need to expand and support our team wherever they may be located"
Zack Fisch

Zack Fisch

Head of Operations & Legal

Clients who have worked with Kruze have collectively raised over $15 billion in VC funding.

We set startups up for fundrising success, and know how to work with the top VCs.

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Vanessa Kruze, CPA
Founder & CEO
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Experienced team helping you

Our account management team is staffed by CPAs and accountants who have, on average, 11 years of experience.

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Bill Hollowsky, CPA
VP of Accounting Services
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Claudine Vantomme, CPA
Controller
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Morgan Avery
SUT/R&D Sr. Tax Accountant
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Beth Bassler
Controller, CPA
Protara Therapeutics

Grew from a 2-person startup to a NASDAQ listed public company.


"The Kruze team helped us grow from a 2-person startup to a NASDAQ listed public company in 2 years. We wouldn’t have gotten public without Kruze’s support. Anyone thinking of launching a startup should make Vanessa their first call!"
Jesse Shefferman

Jesse Shefferman

CEO

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Important Tax Dates for Startups

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