The fast, easy way to get a 409A valuation.

The Fast409A process blends the best of software and human expertise. Each valuation takes an hour or less of your time to submit, is delivered in days not weeks, and is customized to the nuances of your individual startup.

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It seemed to take far more time and money than it should have to do our 409A valuation way back in the day. It's one of those things you have to do as a startup but can be very distracting.
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@rrhoover I love the whole suite of apps that the LTSE team is building out for founders -- absurdly useful and beautiful!
While we were building Staffjoy, I knew that we needed a 409a valuation. When you issue stock options to employees, you need to know a value of the company so that the options can be taxed correctly. So, you bring in a 3rd party accountant to determine that valuation in a defensible way (which is defined by Section 409a of the IRS internal revenue code). I kept delaying the 409a process because it seemed like an overall opaque, expensive, and slow process. Then, one day our lawyers basically said "you need a 409a valuation done yesterday", and I had to figure something out. We ended up being a beta user of Fast409a. It was an easy and cheap process. The valuation itself was done by Silicon Valley Bank, which made me (and our lawyers) confident in its defensibility. The hardest part was digitizing our cap table, which took about an hour. (I continued to use the digital cap table for modeling exit scenarios and sharing info with investors, so I probably should have done it sooner!). After that, I answered some basic questions about our fundraising, market, and comparables - which was info I already had in our pitch decks. Then, SVB took over, asked some clarifying questions by telephone, and in about 4 days we had a 409a valuation done! It's delivered as a PDF via email. Overall I'm a happy customer and would use it again. Fast409A did everything we needed in a quick and compliant way.
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@philipithomas thanks for sharing valuable product feedback as an early customer and helping us make the product better.
@philipithomas Yeah, you want it for (eventual) tax implications, but you also need it issuing option grants with exercise prices. Note: If you're a pre-launch startup in its earliest days, the common practice is for the board to make an educated determination on the value of each share. However, you will quickly need to get that 409A once you start growing and raising money.
@johnschenk they are one and the same - the exercise price determines the taxes the employee pays
@philipithomas Yes I know, but what I'm saying is you may not have tax implications for years. But you do have option granting implications immediately.
Hey guys, I'm the lead engineer for Fast409A at the LTSE. 409A is a chore that needs to be done by every founder, so we built a streamlined process to get it out of the way easily. I'd love to hear what you think!
I recently completed a valuation with Fast409A. Their service was affordable, fair and most importantly FAST. They turned around the 409A in 25% of the time estimated by any other firm. Despite this, the 409A report was thorough and defensible, using multiple formal valuation methods to determine a valuation that I ultimately thought was quite fair. Before I discovered Fast409A I had spoke with a few other firms. The best alternative (with 4x the turnaround time) required a large amount of legwork on my end to assemble various official financial documents. Hours of work on my end. Fast409A streamlined the onerous 409A data collection process, working with me to get the key pieces of information to complete the valuation. So not only is it a faster overall turnaround time, it's also faster for the Founder (or finance person) who has to cull the necessary financial information. I would highly recommend Fast409A. They saved weeks of delay during a time when I don't even hours to spare. Lastly a pro-tip: Don't issue stock to employees / advisors / etc until you get a 409A. If you have, you already done this, your may find yourself in need of a (See @philipithomas comment for a more thorough explanation of when / why this is needed.)
@rsweetland Glad to hear we saved you time. +1 on the pro-tip
Great idea! I was working at a startup in Boston (Cignifi) when we had to do a 409a. I was in touch with the firm doing it and remember it was a pain and took a lot of time: gathering everything, sending it over, conferencing on the phone,... If this service takes away only a bit of that it's incredibly helpful!
@thomasleiterman Thanks for sharing your experience with 409As. We built Fast409A based on such stories and feedback from users. Would love to hear more specifically about your pain points last time.
@thomasleiterman Do you remember how long the process took for you, both the time you had to spend gathering together your info, and the time it took for your valuation to be completed?
@pavitrabhalla let's try, although that was some 5 years ago. One pain point surely was understanding the wording of the requests, another one was getting the required details and explaining any specialties in the existing share structure... Hope this helps, although it might be skewed from my memory :D
@pavitrabhalla I'd guess the from start to finish it was some 2 to 2.5 months. With gathering everything taking about 1-1.5 months and the completed valuation some 2 weeks. But I also remember that it took time to get the contract for the valuation ready which took another week or so. Having that as a fixed price is a huge timesaver.
@thomasleiterman Thanks for sharing. To add perspective, our fastest submission took only 9 minutes from sign up to completing all the information. Once the information is submitted, the valuation is ready for review in 1 - 5 days.