party round wants you to know the party isn’t over yet. In fact it has been renamed, turned the music down a little bit and finally released some bites. Don’t we all get hungry after a certain point?
Party Round announced today that it has rebranded as Capital to underline its product expansion. Now the startup will not only make it easier for other startups to organize their own party round. Capital wants to build a tech stack for the modern founder to manage their finances, a busy space but one that always needs more disruption.
Until now, the startup has focused on automating seed deals for the likes of Diagram, Popshop, JuneShine and Yuga Labs. Plus, as CEO and co-founder Jordi Hays will admit, a lot of marketing.
“Party Round was this amazing, living, breathing meme that evolved and was meant to entertain the community,” Hays, who built the company with Sarah Pursuit, said. “But the point is, even our ambition as a company, and what we want to do on the product side, is” [different]. Fundraising and investments get so much coverage in the startup media, but it might be 1-5% of what it really takes to build a business.”
“We were very comfortable saying that in the first 18 months of building this business, we will be ignoring every channel possible except tech Twitter, and that was the best possible strategy we could have done,” said the founder. . “There are 100,000 early stage founders and investors who have signed up to our email list.”
Capital wants to take that trust and interest away and give the same founders a place to attract, hold and spend that capital they have earned. It’s a maturing process for the company, which months ago raised $7 million from Alexis Ohanian’s Seven Seven Six fund, Anish Acharya of a16z, Shrug Capital, Packy McCormick, Nik Sharma and Austin Rief.
This is the easiest way to describe what Capital is doing today: founders can turn to the platform to create and establish terms for SAFE notes, then invite potential investors to contribute through the platform. Investors meanwhile can choose to link their bank account to invest in the company via USD or crypto with specific allocation; all while Capital handles back-end documents. There is an NFT to verify the investment if investors are interested in NFTs verifying the investment.
Once the funds are transferred, founders can use Capital to create a business checking account, get a debit card, and make payments. Hays explained how a founder who uses Ramp for credit cards can then link his Ramp account to Capital; the same goes for if someone used Rippling for payroll. The point of Capital is that it gives all those fintech tools one house to live in, or, some would say, one living room to party.
Hays isn’t too intimidated by the unicorns in space, noting that many (like Brex and Ramp) have started to track costs and are heavily focused on the venture, while Capital is trying to work with smaller startups at the time of its launch. their first fundraiser.
“Before you need a bank account, you have to put money into that bank account. And unless you’re bootstrapping or generating income very, very early and self-finance, those funds usually come from your investors,” Hays said. “We are focused solely on businesses at the inflection point and are figuring out how to be the first place they collect, hold and spend their money.”
The challenge for Capital is whether it can prove that its users, a number that are undisclosed, are tacky enough to stick around. Until now, the company’s fundraising tool has been free with a few simple steps: make a round, configure the SAFE terms and invite investors. Hays says they will monetize new products over time, but ease of use remains a focus for the company.
“I think being funny and entertaining is great, but in the long run, we think the most important thing is” [thing] builds the best products and software for the founding period. And for that we need a brand that will resonate more broadly and beyond our bubble,” said the founder.