Why the CFO of Coffee Meets Bagel Recommends airCFO for Early-Stage Startups
Founded in 2012, Coffee Meets Bagel (CMB) is a women-founded Series B startup with one of the most popular online mobile dating apps in the online dating industry.
CMB is one of the largest independent companies in the industry, with offices in San Francisco and Seattle and remote workers across North America. It is also ranked as one of the best companies to work for by Glassdoor.
Quincy Yang was CMB's first finance hire, serving as a strategic thought partner to the executive team to help drive business growth and build out the company's finance function. See his interview with airCFO's COO Alex Wittenberg below:
Quincy Yang, CFO at Coffee Meets Bagel, Interviewed by Alex Wittenberg, COO of airCFO
Q: What were the biggest pain points and challenges you faced when you first joined Coffee Meets Bagel and how did the airCFO team help address some of those pain points?
The biggest pain point I had when I first joined the company and how airCFO has helped was, first and foremost, the financial model of the company. I needed to get a firm grasp of our cash flow as soon as possible as a small startup. I needed airCFO's help to build a very robust financial model, including an income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement. airCFO built a very robust Google Sheet model that I use nearly every day to help our company forecast our cash flow.
Q: Could you elaborate on the value that your team derives from the financial model that we built for you and how you leverage it on a day-to-day basis to make strategic decisions at your company?
First of all, the financial model creates a lot of transparency for our executive team on how our financials are doing. It allows me to have a finger on the pulse at any given moment about what is happening with our company's financials. It's a live view that I can easily communicate to our executive team how we're doing from a revenue and cost perspective and how long our cash runway will last.
Q: What is the one specific aspect of working with airCFO that you found most beneficial to you as a CFO of a fast-growing startup?
The single most valuable thing that airCFO brought to CMB is that the team is extremely flexible. I feel that I can reach out to my main contacts at airCFO at any given time and hour. That creates tremendous value for startups like ours, who are moving pretty quickly. We also want to contain our costs, so I don't want to have a very large internal team doing it; I'd rather our company focus on engineering and products and have airCFO focus more on the financial components. I don't have to worry about that in-house function right now.
Q: What have you done with the time and money that you saved by partnering with a company like airCFO as opposed to building out an in-house finance and accounting function from scratch?
With all the time and money we've saved working with airCFO, we have been able to focus a lot more on analyzing the numbers and focusing more on the strategy. I'd rather have myself and my team focus more on the strategy, executing and analyzing the numbers and less so on the mechanics of building the financial model and closing the books.
Q: Would you recommend airCFO to an early-stage founder or finance leader who's looking for help with building their finance and accounting function? If so, why would you recommend them?
Absolutely, yes! AirCFO is very responsive, they're very flexible, and I find them to be knowledgeable about both accounting and finance. It allows me and my team to scale a lot more easily as opposed to worrying about hiring people myself and managing them myself. For a small startup like ours, we need that flexibility to be very nimble but also not burden the company with a lot of G&A (General and Administrative) and financial costs. So yes, I would highly recommend airCFO to other companies like us.
Q: What is one thing you want someone who's considering using airCFO to know about our services?
The company is very intelligent and knowledgeable about finance and accounting and is also very flexible. That is very much needed for a small startup looking to scale its operations.
Q: Is there anything you'd like to add about the experience in airCFO or anything else you'd want everyone to know about working with airCFO that may be helpful?
Another thing I'd like to add is airCFO is very partnership-driven. The company has worked with me very closely and there are a lot of things that have changed over the years for us. The team is very flexible with new technology as the space continues to evolve from a tool and technology perspective. I've appreciated that partnership as we continue to streamline our processes, improve efficiency and try to lower our costs as we improve and scale our revenue.
airCFO has become known for flexibility and the ability to adapt to new technologies. We have consistently delivered quality finance and accounting solutions to startups like CMB and will continue to do so.
Coffee Meets Bagel has been a very dynamic startup over the years. It's been great to navigate through the ups and downs and various initiatives CMB has undertaken over the last couple of years. To see the growth and the profitability that CMB has shown has been a gratifying experience on airCFO's side, and we are glad to be able to participate in it.
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About air CFO
airCFO is so much more than an accounting firm; we pride ourselves on helping startups succeed. Our proprietary tech tools and dedicated team of finance, accounting, and people ops experts deliver optimized services tailored to each company’s unique needs. We partner with founders to demystify complex issues, steering startups clear of roadblocks from their Day 1 through to exit. Unlike siloed software tools or disjointed independent contractors, airCFO offers integrated specialized support and true finance leadership. Our hands-on approach means we rapidly add value as strategic advisors who understand the startup journey. Inside 200+ of the world’s top startups, airCFO takes care of the back office so founders can focus on driving growth.