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Co-founding Love: Start Something

Jess Erickson
by

August 17, 2012

This story is by Spence Murray on how he, Kevin Cheng, Arshad Tayyeb, and Scott San Filippo started working together on Incredible Labs, a 500 Startups funded company. Incredible Labs created Donna, a mobile personal assistant that anticipates your needs. You can follow them on Twitter here.

 

Summer of ’11, I found myself freshly free from running engineering, release and partner relationships at my 5th startup.  While I was a long time startup survivor, I’d only been a founder of 2 of the aforementioned ventures.  At that point in my career, I was still very fired up to dive into something, but was also feeling cautious.  Should I start something of my own?  Should I join someone else’s (again)?  Should I take a break?  Go somewhere big and forge some new relationships?

 

In timely fashion, a long-time friend approached me for his annual pitch of “we should start something!”… though this time was a little different.  It happened that 2 other good friends of his were also looking for their next passionate preoccupation.  So he convinced the 4 of us to get together, just to “see what might happen”.

 

I remember that first meeting well.  Right away, the talent and energy in the room felt good.  The ensuing discussion very quickly focused.  We found ourselves in orbit around a similar set of ideas… we started completing each other’s sentences.  I remember talking to my wife that night, and saying “I think I might have to do this”, before “this” had really been defined.  It just felt like the 4 of us could decide to make toasters and it would still be a great experience.

 

We decided on a direction, and gave ourselves a timeline of a couple of months to see what we could define in terms of a viable product and business.  3 months later we had a funded business, and a month after that we stared at each other in shock at our new SF office.

 

We were off and running!

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