Jordan Gonen and Jacob Schein had both worked in the tech industry for a few years when they realized they had no clear understanding of their own finances. Like many other tech employees, the two software engineers had shares in startups they had worked for, cryptocurrency investments, and other illiquid assets. They wanted to track their assets and get help with investing and paying taxes, but they felt that traditional financial institutions and roboadvisors didn’t offer simple or holistic solutions tailored to people with these assets.
That’s why they started Compound almost three years ago. Link, part of the Y Combinator class 2019, calls itself an all-in-one wealth management platform that gives users a complete financial view of their liquid and illiquid assets, including cash, securities, cryptocurrencies, real estate and venture investments.
I sat down for an interview with Compound’s CEO (and happened to be a former high school classmate of mine) Gonen, to hear what he’s building. Before launching Compound, he and Schein personally conducted more than 1,300 consultations with tech employees, founders and investors to assess their financial planning needs, he told me.
“We started the company by trying to solve our own problems. We wrote an essay on stock compensation that got a lot of attention in the tech community, and we’re just starting to help people [who reached out to us]’ said Gonnie.
Gonen and Schein have helped these individuals advise on a range of topics, from whether or not to exercise their stock options to setting up a wealth plan to diversification after an IPO.
The conversations they had with people in the tech industry paid off, helping them attract executives from a slew of tech companies — Coinbase, Meta, and Polychain, to name a few — to participate. to their seed round, which the company announced today.
Compound raised $37 million in the round, led by Greenoaks and former Stripe product manager Lachy Groom, with participation from YCombinator, XYZ, SciFi, Day One Ventures, Silver Lake’s Egon Durban, FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried and the aforementioned angel investors .
The company has “hundreds” of users, according to Gonen. It doesn’t explicitly target users within a specific power range and works with a variety of clients at different stages of their careers, he added.
Compound sees itself as a one-stop shop for its users to view their personal balance sheet, Gonen said. It uses integrations to link to various investment platforms for stocks, cryptocurrencies and other illiquid assets, although Gonen declined to share how many platforms partner with Compound in this way.
The company also uses out-of-the-box integrations for exchanges that may not yet be partner platforms, and manually tracks users’ assets if they’re held in particularly complex structures, Gonen said. Compound does not partner with platforms for its tax return service; instead, it offers the service internally through a tax office owned by the company.
With the new funds, Gonen hopes to allow the team, which currently has about 50 employees, to grow ‘free equipment’.
“People should optimize their finances globally rather than optimizing them locally for certain situations,” Gonen said.
“That said, many customers come to us around catalyst events,” he added. “They decide whether or not to exercise their stock options, and consider whether they should get a loan to exercise their options… Should they change states? How do they diversify after a liquidity event? How much can they afford to invest in angels? What Compound does is provide an all-in-one platform to answer those questions.”