Atticus: The Search for the Ideal Investor

By Russell Siegelman, Andrew Freiman
2023 | Case No. E818 | Length 23 pgs.

This case follows Sam Byker, the Founder and CEO of Atticus, as he creates, scales, and fundraises for the company. Atticus is a platform that serves individuals in need by connecting them with law firms that can help. The case covers the company’s history from its inception through to its Series A financing.

The case explores the tension Byker faces between Atticus’ opportunities for growth and maintaining focus on the company’s mission when selecting a lead investor. The first vignette leaves Byker choosing between two Series A term sheets: one from an impact-focused investor, and the other from a venture capital firm with a track-record of building iconic brands. The second vignette explores a set of strategic decisions Byker must make that place growth and impact in tension with one another.

Learning Objective

The primary learning objective of this case is to evaluate the quantitative and qualitative impacts of deciding between investors who place different emphasis on social impact and commercial success. The secondary learning objective is for students to develop a personal framework to navigate potential tensions between growth and impact when scaling an enterprise. Class discussion will focus on Atticus’ Seed and Series A financing rounds, and a set of strategic decisions.
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