Why do companies hesitate to use SAFEs?
A SAFE (Simple Agreement for Future Equity) is an efficient way for a company to raise pre-venture capital equity financing. As with convertible notes, SAFEs facilitate investment now while pushing off pricing until a future equity round of funding. SAFEs can provide for discounts on the next round price and valuation caps, but they are not debt. Sounds good, so why aren’t companies using them more? Because they are not confident that investors will understand SAFEs, companies often opt for the more traditional convertible note structures. In fact, SAFEs help both companies and investors by streamlining the investment process. To help educate potential investors, see Y-Combinator’s SAFE primer by clicking here.