Simple Financing for Your Stock Options

Fast funding. Flexible terms.

Check out why ECP is the best partner for your option exercise.

So, You Have Stock Options

You took a leap of faith working for a startup. You put your heart and soul into a young company you truly believed in - you invested with time in return for stock options. Now reality has hit and it’s time to decide: do you exercise them or let them expire?

There are so many factors to consider: can you tie up your money in a potentially long-term illiquid stock? What are the tax implications? What if the company fails?

Here's What We Do

It's simple: we take the risk out of exercising your options. Your savings remain intact, your holding period anxiety is relieved, and your years of hard work don't go to waste.

Here's How

Employee Capital Partners (ECP) is a firm that provides flexible capital to employees to cover the costs associated with exercising stock options. We partner with people like you: current and former employees of venture-backed companies, so you benefit from the gains on your stock options without having to invest your own capital. We have already partnered with 100+ with current and former employees at 40+ high-quality venture-backed companies  and we’re ready to partner with you next.

By having us cover your exercise and taxes, you are free to spend your hard-earned money on what is most important to you.

Shared Upside

You're a true partner throughout this process. Upon an exit of the company, we share in the good: we keep a small percentage of the profits, while you take the majority (you earned it after all).

No Personal Liability

We own the downside. In the event your shares end up worthless, we assume the loss with no recourse to you. We will never hold your personal assets liable.

Unlimited Financing

Have a lot of options? Don't worry, you can't shock us. We have no limit on the amount we are able to finance, though we typically deal with amounts > $10,000.

Here's Why you Should Work With us

We take care of our bottom line by taking care of yours.

Taxes? Let us pay for those.

Exercising your options creates a tax liability (sometimes, it’s substantial). But you don’t have to let that stop you. We're able to cover a portion or all of the taxes associated with your exercise: you decide. Our experts can also help you save on future taxes by helping you qualify for long term capital gains.

Risk? You can pass it on to us.

We get it - options are risky. Investing in a private company with no promise of return can be scary. That's why we assume a substantial amount of your financial risk through our financing solution. It doesn't stop there: we also take on your holding period risk- sometimes, an acquisition or IPO can take many years.

Options? You have them, literally.

We want to give you options on how you spend your money. If that means fronting your exercise cost, then what do you need us for? But if you had other plans for your money, like buying your first home, paying off debt, or going on a dream vacation, we are here to help.

Our Solution

Our financing solution is designed with a spirit of partnership. We provide flexible capital to help you before your shares are liquid.

We're in this together - which means no monthly interest payments or hidden fees. Our cash advance can be used for:

Exercise of Vested Stock Options

Most commonly, we provide current and former employees with the cash needed to both exercise vested (read: earned) stock options and pay the tax bill. For these, you likely  have recently left a company and are facing a short window to either exercise your options or let them expire.

Early Exercise of Unvested Options

For select situations, we will help finance the early exercise of unvested stock options.

Why would you exercise early?

By early exercising and filing an 83(b) election with the IRS, you can potentially pay a much smaller amount in taxes as your options vest. This also starts the long-term capital gains holding period clock which can help your reduce future tax liability. The bottom line: This financing structure allows you to capture additional value as your options vest and when your shares are sold in a future liquidity event.

Previously Exercised Stock Options

A post-exercise cash advance for current and former employees who have previously exercised their stock options and are looking for personal liquidity.

If you fronted the cost of your exercise but realized you value a more diversified personal portfolio, we might be able to help free up some of your cash.

Our Process

We know you're busy. That's why we've designed our process to be short and simple, with ECP there every step of the way.

1. Intro Call & Info Request

We will hop on a quick, 10-15 minute call for ECP to get a better understand of your unique situation.

What you’ll need: For this call, all you need is some basic information about your options including your vested option amount, strike price, expiration, etc.

2. Receive Offer

After the intro call, we will pull together an offer to finance your option exercise and walk you through it over the phone or email.

Rest assured: Our offer will always be based on our belief in good faith partnerships - we hold ourselves to a higher-than-industry standard. This is why our financing solution is straightforward and transparent - there's no need for us to explain away hidden fees or interest payments – they simply aren’t there.

3. Due Diligence & Background Check

You know all about us. As our prospective future partner, we want to get to know you too. While we know we like you already, we kindly request all prospective partners complete a basic background and credit check to do our due diligence.

4. Wire Transfer, Exercise, & Enjoy

After you pass your background screening, we'll wire the money straight to your bank account and ask for confirmation of your exercise.

Now - enjoy. Celebrate your equity participation with significantly reduced downside risk.

What our partners are saying

"I am one of those successful career people that really is not great with personal finances. So when it came time for my first IPO, I needed some help to navigate the stock buy and IPO process and details. I was nervous that these “finance guys” contacting me left and right were in it to scheme me. Then along came Zach and ECP. We took our time getting to know each other and I asked a million questions. He always had time for me to explain, then re-explain some of the complexities. At the end of the day, it was about trust for me. I trusted Zach and the plan we developed and knew he had my interest at the core of the conversations. I learned a lot through this process and am grateful for crossing paths with ECP to help me during this important, once in a lifetime, financial milestone."

— Vice President, Brand Marketing
"When you leave a start-up with a large amount of stock options, you have a difficult decision to make. Do you exercise your shares, locking up a large amount of cash, or not? There’s no guarantee the company goes public or is acquired. It could be a very risky decision. Zach and the ECP team make that decision easier. By financing the purchase of your options with ECP, you limit your downside exposure, while still participating in the potential upside gain. In my case, it worked out exactly as planned for a once in a lifetime payout. If you’re in the same position, give Zach and ECP a call."

— Vice President, Strategy
"Employee Capital Partners was a pleasure to work with. Throughout the whole process, Zach was extremely responsive and answered all of my questions. Without ECP, I would not have been able to exercise my options. I’m glad I was able to work with them, especially because my former employer did end up having a modest exit. The whole process was smooth and straightforward, so I would definitely recommend ECP if you want to exercise your options without tying up any of your own capital."

— Lead Product Manager
"The reason I went with ECP was because they had the most competitive offer and the quickest turnaround... I've found this to be an advantage in dealing with smaller firms- better flexibility and responsiveness. Thanks again for all your help, patience, and expeditiousness throughout this process.  I wasn't sure we were going to be able to make it happen, given the short timeline, but we pulled it off!"

— Senior Software Engineer

Check Out Our Blog

There’s a lot to learn about stock options. From exercising, to taxes, to vesting, we’ve covered it all. If you’re ready to learn, there's something in here for you.

LEARN ABOUT:

ZACH VEENSTRA

Zach is the Founder and Managing Partner at ECP. Prior to ECP, Zach was on the investment team at TVC Capital where he focused on investments in and acquisitions of growth stage B2B and enterprise software companies. While working with growth stage companies at TVC, Zach saw multiple occasions where employees let their stock options expire because – at the end of the day – they simply could not cover the out-of-pocket upfront costs or bear the uncertainty risk. Recognizing the need for a solution to help employees keep and benefit from what they’ve earned, Zach started ECP.

Zach has also ensured that ECP is funded by investors who are equally passionate about helping you convert your hard-earned options into real equity ownership.

Our Values

01. Simplicity & Transparency

We take pride in our financing solution’s simplicity and transparency. When we started ECP, we wanted to offer a product that we would use ourselves and recommend to colleagues. That’s why our solution doesn’t have hidden fees, “gotcha” terms, or monthly interest payments. We don’t believe in profiting off confusion—it’s simple: what you see is what you get.

02. Communicative, Relationship Driven Partner Service

An ECP partnership is a long-term commitment and can involve large amounts of capital. Due to the nature of our relationship, our partner-first approach is not a selling point, it’s an obligation. We listen, deliver speedy responses to questions and inquiries, and walk side-by-side throughout the process to prioritize your comfort. That’s our commitment to you.

03. Commitment To Shared Success

Our business model is predicated on partnership— your success means our success. You created the value behind the options by working long nights and tough days at your startup company, so it’s only fair that you receive the majority of the reward in the case of an exit. We recognize this, and structure our terms accordingly.

04. Flexibility & Fairness

We’re a small firm by design. We’re selective, but not afraid to make bold commitments in the companies we believe in. As a result, we have the flexibility to offer fair, competitive financing packages: amounts and terms that you have a say in.

Let's Connect

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Ready when you are.

Pick up the phone and give us a call at (917) 905-0031 or fill out the form if you are ready to turn your hard work into tangible equity. We’re up for anything and ready when you are.