Podcast Transcript – Series FOUR, Episode 56

chiko chigaya, talisman April 2023


[00:00:00] Chiko Chingaya: One thing that’s super important to me and always been important to me is I wanna build an aspirational black led tech company. And I think what that means to me, you know, like Stripe, right? People talk about that company like, yo, I’m trying to go work there. And because they’re building brilliant products and great technology and it’s a.

[00:00:23] I think there’s a lot of brilliant black LED tech companies that are bubbling up, but I wanna be part of those that are aspirational in nature, [00:00:30] where everybody’s like, I want to go work there because of the things that they make and what they stand for.

[00:00:36] Dan: What’s up Unfound Nation? Dan Kihanya here. Thanks so much for checking out another episode of Founders Unfound. That was Chiko Chingaya. Co-founder and CEO of Talisman, a company building the next generation of software management, offering companies a centralized overview of all their software and SaaS.

[00:00:53] Born in post-colonial Zimbabwe, Chiko moved to the US when he was seven. Growing up in and around Dallas with parents always [00:01:00] working. Chiko developed a sense of independence, pursuing early passions for writing in the arts. He entered college under the premise that he would pursue law potentially, but a trip to his homeland midway through under. Left him humbled and determined what followed was a masterclass of career roles, product, marketing, sales, and client success. Then one evening watching Shark Tank with a glass of wine in hand. He had the epiphany that would become talisman. Keep listening to hear how it happened. Chiko and Taliman have a great story. [00:01:30]

[00:01:30] Our episode is sponsored by AfriBlocks, the global Pan-African freelance marketplace and collaboration platform. A great resource for devs, designers, and virtual assistants. Check out the link in the show notes. And before we continue, please make sure to like and subscribe to Founders Unfound. We’re available anywhere you get your podcasts, even YouTube. And of course you can follow us on Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn @foundersunfound.

[00:01:53] And if you like what you hear, drop us a review on Apple or at podchaser.com

[00:01:57] Now on with the episode. Stay [00:02:00] safe and hope you enjoy.

[00:02:15] Hello and welcome to Founders Unfound Spotlighting the best startups you don’t know yet. We bring you stories of exceptional founders from underrepresented and underestimated back. This is the latest episode in our continuing series on founders of African descent.[00:02:30]

[00:02:30] I’m your host, Dan Kihanya. Let’s get on it.

[00:02:33] Today we have Chiko Chingaya Founder and CEO of Talisman, a company building the next generation of software management that offers companies a centralized view of all their subscriptions, giving them the contacts and control over how much they are spending and who’s using what. Welcome to the show, Chiko.

[00:02:50] We’re super excited to have you on. Thanks for making the time.

[00:02:53] Chiko Chingaya: No problem. Thanks for having me.

[00:02:55] Dan: Terrific. So I gave a brief introduction or a brief overview of the company, but maybe you could [00:03:00] tell us exactly what is Talisman and what are you trying to solve.

[00:03:03] Chiko Chingaya: Yeah. So the end goal for us is software is, is now, and it’s also the future, specifically subscription software. So most companies that you run into are using a bunch of subscription software Met at the very worst. They just have a couple, right? That they’re, they’re utilizing. So our job and kind of what we’re trying to build is a way for you to manage and control all of these things given.

[00:03:28] It’s a relatively newish [00:03:30] problem, right? Uh, in the old days, you’d get a CD and then you’d put the CD into your, your laptop and you’d install a piece of software. Well, nowadays you can do multiple free trials. You can purchase things super easily with a credit card online. So before a company knows it, they’ve got a ton of software.

[00:03:46] A great example of this is us, right? We have five members of the team primarily, and we have a couple of contractors. We. When we used our own tool to analyze our software stack, we thought maybe we’ll get 20 or 30. We had 90 applications that [00:04:00] were detected across the, the company, right? These were different things that people had logged into, purchased, and free trials of.

[00:04:06] So it really, the footprint and it gets outta control very, very quickly. Then a lot of companies start solving this using like Excel spreadsheets or QuickBooks and various other tools that really aren’t built to solve this problem in the best way. So we’re trying to change that.

[00:04:20] Dan: Awesome. I totally appreciate the challenge. I have the same thing when I review, just did my taxes and I reviewed all the software subscriptions and I was [00:04:30] like, why do I still pay for that? And am I still using that? So in this age where we need to be more austere and control of these things, it totally makes sense. But we are gonna dive more into Talisman in a bit.

[00:04:40] But before we do that, I would love to hear more about your background. Where are you from? Where did you grow up? What was exciting for you when you were young?.

[00:04:49] Chiko Chingaya: So I’m, I’m from Zimbabwe, born in Harare, and moved to the states when I was seven. And background and, and family operating. My dad was an aircraft engineer.

[00:04:59] Mom [00:05:00] was a nurse. They both kind of came up in post-Colonial War Zimbabwe. Now they were, they grew up in Colonial Zimbabwe, but my dad actually fought in the Zimbabwe military, the, the battle for freedom there. So, They were in Zim during kind of the golden years. So if you’re familiar at all with the history of Zimbabwe, there was this period from post-independence, which was 1980, all the way up to late nineties where Zimbabwe really was performing at a super high level and kind of like a, a beacon in Africa.

[00:05:27] And things really started to go [00:05:30] downhill in the late nineties. So my dad decided time to look for a different avenue, somewhere else to go. And it also coincided with my little brother at the time had just been bored and he had a kidney. So for my dad, the big thing for him was getting over to the west to get him the right kind of medical attention that he needed.

[00:05:46] So he moved the family to to Dallas. My dad came here first, then we followed immediately after and grew up most of formative years. Spent a little bit of time in Dallas and then most of the time was spent in Wiley, Texas where I’d go on to meet my, uh, my co-founder Mike in high [00:06:00] school.

[00:06:00] Dan: Amazing story. I very similar to myself.

[00:06:03] My grandfather fought in, uh, well, he didn’t necessarily fought, I guess he was doing intelligence and support, but he was imprisoned during the Kenyan fight for freedom. And Kenya had a period right afterwards under Jomo Kenyatta, where there was a thriving crazily growing economy. So seven years old is pretty young, but what was your recollections about that shift? I mean, was it startling to you? Was it exciting to you? Did you [00:06:30] feel different as a young person from the context of Zimbabwe to United States?

[00:06:35] Chiko Chingaya: I remember being excited, right? Because if, if you’ve, if you live in the United States, You don’t maybe know how people view it from outside of the United States.

[00:06:46] Right. I, I think a lot of the narrative, and maybe this is newer, like I don’t know how younger people today feel about the United States when they look at it, but when I was coming up it was like, yo, it’s gonna be incredible there. Like, it’s gonna be PlayStations and, and [00:07:00] Game Boys and, and everything’s gonna be in America.

[00:07:02] So for. I was super stoked and excited and as a kid you don’t think about the fact that you’re not going back. You know, like that never occurs to you. You’re like saying goodbye, but it means nothing to you in that context because it’s like, I see these people every day, I’m gonna see them again, is a thought process.

[00:07:17] But I think for my mom and, and my dad, it was like a sad thing because I think about it now at my age of. In the inverse, like if I was to today pick up and leave all of this behind, [00:07:30] that would be extremely difficult to do. But I think for me as being young, I was excited. But then when I got to the US it was tough because this sounds weird, but like it was before being from Africa was cool, right?

[00:07:42] It was like, it seems like now there’s. Pride in having an African lineage. I see that at my brothers and they’re seven years younger than me. The other one’s eight. But when I first got here, I remember it was kind of like not cool to be from Africa. You were kind of looked down upon and I was going to school in, in the inner city [00:08:00] and uh, that was a little difficult.

[00:08:02] But my English, you know, I’d gone to an English school since the age of three, so I could communicate extremely well. You know, high reading level, all, all that kind of stuff. I’d been lucky to have parents. Really invested in education from an early age, so that part wasn’t too difficult. But yeah, just finding new friends, kind of figuring out where you fit was also difficult, um, coming into a new country.

[00:08:22] Dan: Yeah. I’ve talked to others about the journey coming from a country in Africa and having sort of that origin and coming to the United States. [00:08:30] And one of the things that a lot of them bring up is like, I didn’t know I was black until I got to the United States. That wasn’t a thing. Did you have that kind of experience at some point or is it pretty obvious I guess when you were growing up?

[00:08:42] Chiko Chingaya: Yeah, because America is is pretty multicultural, but for those that have been to Africa, I’ve talked to friends that born and raised here and they go to Africa and they’re like, everyone was black.

[00:08:52] It’s an odd thing for them to like see is everyone is black, so your doctor, your lawyer, your dentist, your barber, [00:09:00] everybody is black. And then you come here and it’s just different and you have to come to terms with that being a thing that is different and not the norm. It’s like a really bizarre thing. So it wasn’t so much that I came and I just, I was like, oh wow. Like I finally recognize it. It was more like, oh wow, everything just feels different.

[00:09:17] And now I have to deal with all of these different cultures in. At least in Zimbabwe, you’d see some white people. You’d see, uh, people of Indian descent. We had a large Chinese population, but everything else was brand new to me. I’ll never [00:09:30] forget the first day we got to the us we went to the gas station and my dad was like, get out and help me pump the gas.

[00:09:35] And in Zim you didn’t pump gas. There were, it’s kind of like Oregon. There was like guys that did that. So for me, that was like my welcome to America moment was, it was. And I was outside pumping gas and freezing and I was like, this is not off to a good start. You know? Like this is not the America that I thought I was coming to.

[00:09:53] Dan: Isn’t that ironic? That’s an interesting perspective. Let me ask you this. This is a little bit more of a deep question, I suppose, but [00:10:00] how do you think the emergence from a colonial and post-colonial. Zimbabwe has influenced your thinking. I know for me, my dad, I voted in every election since I have 18. It doesn’t matter if it’s local dog catcher, cuz he told me very early, it’s like you cannot take those kinds of freedoms for granted.

[00:10:21] And they’re not just a privilege, they’re responsibility. And I think for him, he emerged from that state of growing up in the [00:10:30] colonial. Era and then emerging and what it was like to be different and independent. How do you think that has imprinted you?

[00:10:37] Chiko Chingaya: I saw an interview with Todd Sie Coates on the Daily Show, and I, I think this was when the period that Trevor Noah was the host and he was talking about how in his opinion, Barack Obama could have never emerged if he didn’t have an African father.

[00:10:53] And kind of that situation because of his worldview would’ve been totally different. And I tend to agree with. I think for [00:11:00] me, my grandfather on my mom’s side always wanted to be a businessman. He put that into his kids, like it was like really important. But they, he wasn’t allowed to, right? He worked at the factory and he eventually got his gold watch and like that was the pinnacle of success for somebody that looked like him at that time.

[00:11:17] So I think for me, my worldview being influenced, you know, post-colonial, where you have people that previously were repressed, all of a sudden have opportu. It’s almost like a battery in my back that was [00:11:30] put in early by my parents, both politically and from a, a business perspective is like to, to the same point that you’re making, opportunities are not granted, they’re privileges.

[00:11:41] So I think I to this day still operate very much on that premise and that’s like my core motivator is I’ve been given a sliver of an opportunity. And to me I always think like that’s the biggest mistake anyone can ever make cuz I’m gonna. Whatever that little bit is, and we’re gonna figure out how to make it work, even [00:12:00] if it doesn’t have a dollar sign next to it, or like an obvious outcome.

[00:12:04] I think that’s just always been my worldview in a law, largely influenced by my parents and that colonial experience.

[00:12:11] Dan: Interesting. Yeah, that’s that’s a great point. So let’s, let’s talk about growing up. When you got to high school, things that you liked to do, extracurriculars, did you have any sense of what you wanted to do when you were in high school? Or did your parents influence you in terms of trying to direct you in certain directions?

[00:12:28] Chiko Chingaya: Well, my parents, there [00:12:30] was only like three professions that existed. I think their minds like doctor, lawyer, engineer, like that’s pretty much. And I understand why, right? Like in it’s the whole post-colonial thing.

[00:12:42] Those were the jobs that were the most prestigious and stable in, in their eyes. So it made sense why they would push me in that direction. But I was always creative, specifically like I liked making things, whether for a while it was. I don’t know, like little movies, whole movies that we would make, we’d like [00:13:00] put together costumes.

[00:13:00] And for a long time I thought I wanted to be a director of movies. I loved movies for my dad and I. That was one thing we really bonded over was eighties movies. So like Robocop, Terminator, I probably shouldn’t have been watching that, but, but those type of films, my dad did not discriminate based on my age I was watching.

[00:13:18] And a lot of like kung fu flicks, you know, things like that. So for. I always wanted to like, make action films and that’s what I loved. And I, I loved the process of creation of like writing a script and then [00:13:30] you bring it to life. So in high school I was on the school news. I did that, I did journalism. I thought I wanted to potentially do sports journalism when I was in high school.

[00:13:39] And later on I figured out, I just didn’t find it interesting to talk about sports every day. And I was like, okay, not a path for. But yeah, I did a lot of different things and then I also played a lot of tennis. My dad was a big tennis player in Zimbabwe and it’s kind of the family sport, so I played a lot of that in in high school.

[00:13:57] And then just creative, goofy things. [00:14:00] You know, I think one of the benefits growing up where we grew up was it was a smaller town on the outskirts of Dallas. So we had the perspective of kind of quote unquote city thinking or city living. And then you also had like the countryness of where we. And it felt a little bit like an enclave where you could just be a kid.

[00:14:18] So I look back at a lot of things that we got to do with appreciation cuz I’m like, we just got to be goofy, which I think was was super important.

[00:14:25] Dan: Yeah, there’s a certain joy in freedom that comes with that. For sure. [00:14:30] So when you got to college, college is a formative time. How were you thinking about your future as you’re coming outta college?

[00:14:37] Chiko Chingaya: I think of college as two different Hals all for me at least. So my parents are immigrant. And they don’t know the process, right? Like they don’t know like the college process. So I’m the oldest. I’m first born of my two younger brothers, so I was the experiment. So I had to figure everything out on my own.

[00:14:56] I remember like sixth grade, I found my own soccer team and signed [00:15:00] myself up cause my parents were always working. So like they just came home and I was like, I gotta go to practice. They were like, whatcha you talking about? But that was kinda like how I operated. Same thing with college, you know, I just found the school Oklahoma State and I was like, okay, cool.

[00:15:13] Like how do I get in? How does this work? And we were supposed to have guidance counselors, but to be honest with you, I never met with one when I was in high school. So in terms of the college process and like me going from, I want to do this to figuring out where to be going and doing those kind of things, it was just kind of.

[00:15:29] Letting it [00:15:30] rip and figuring it out. As I kind of went along, I remember just signing myself up for the a c t and all of that kind of stuff was just me figuring it out. Now for my younger brothers, my parents were much more involved and they’d figured out the process by then. But when I got into college initially, I was just figuring it out.

[00:15:44] I, I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I thought it was pre-law, and I thought journalism might be interesting. And then I ended up taking a trip to Zimbabwe in 2014, and a lot of my friends tell me that there’s something that changed when I went there. And then I came back and, and mainly what it was, [00:16:00] was I’ll never forget, and you, you know, being Kenyon, I’m sure you’re familiar, but when you go visit family, everybody feeds.

[00:16:07] Right. Like there’s, it’s like a rule. Like you, you gotta get fed. And I remember going to Zim and there was a particular day we visited like six family members. Every single one was feeding us. You know, like by the end I was like, dad, I don’t think I can eat one more chicken. Like if I do that, I might die.

[00:16:23] Dan: I had the same experience. Yes. And you’re trying to be polite, but you’re like, I think I’m actually gonna [00:16:30] die if I eat more food.

[00:16:31] Chiko Chingaya: Yep. And that was me. And I remember at the end of that, the last. So impactful on me. We go there, it’s one room house, and then on the floor is like a mattress. And then there’s the stove in the same room.

[00:16:44] So like the family sleeps there, they eat there, they cook. Basically everything happens here and in the back there were three chickens and I remember they killed either one or two to feed, feed us. And I remember turning to my dad and being like, yo, tell them not to do this. Like I, I [00:17:00] don’t feel. Eating this knowing that I see three back there.

[00:17:03] Right. I don’t know if there’s more coming. It doesn’t feel that way. And I remember my dad being like, that would be an insult to them. Cause you’re saying they can’t afford to feed you. Right? So you just gotta sit here and eat your food. And after that experience, I remember walking out of there and I, we were driving away and I was thinking if they were in my shoes and they were going back to America in two weeks, how would they use this opportunity?

[00:17:25] Like if, if we could switch. I know they would go hard, right? They would [00:17:30] do whatever it takes. They would be, you know, late nights, up early, whatever they gotta do to get themselves into a different situation because they’d have a new opportunity. And I just felt like I was wasting in that moment with just how I’d been acting and where my focus level was.

[00:17:46] So when I came back, for me it was time to like lock in and try to make something happen. Cause I, I just felt a different sort of hunger after that.

[00:17:55] Dan: That’s awesome. I mean, uh, what a, what a profound experience to go through. [00:18:00] I think you’re right about the worldview. When, when people have the benefit of experiencing, whether it’s their own culture or just immersion into other places in the world outside of North America, it changes you, changes you in ways that maybe are not obvious all the time, but it gives you totally different lens to look through. Well, we wanna hear more of the story, but we’re gonna take a short break and we’ll be right back with Chiko Chingaya from Talisman.

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[00:19:08] Dan: So we’re back with Chiko from Talisman. So Chiko, tell us before we jive more into Talisman, tell us a little bit about your, your career pre-startup. What kind of things did you do? What was interesting to you? I guess coming outta college, again, thinking about what, what is it that really excites me?

[00:19:24] Chiko Chingaya: Got super fortunate to stumble into tech actually. So my first gig was at a company called Digital [00:19:30] Tutors and shout out to my guy, Ryan Tomans. Who was, he was working there in marketing and he was like, Hey, there’s an opening of digital tutors and they need somebody to run the visual effects vertical.

[00:19:43] And basically, digital tutors was a company that created training content for movie studios and game studios. So think. Pixar, Dreamworks, all the big hitters, all of those people were being trained by small company of 40 people in Oklahoma City. And so I kind of stumbled into that [00:20:00] opportunity because I happened to have the skillset based on all of the studying that I had done, thinking I was gonna be a director.

[00:20:07] Right? So I knew a ridiculous amount about the technical side cuz that’s what always interested. With action movies, right? Was like robocop with the visual effects and all of the different things that you could do. So when I got to the interview, I just knew a bunch of stuff and they were kind of surprised.

[00:20:21] They were like, how does this guy know this stuff? And it worked out perfectly. So I get into tech and I was like, oh, this is amazing. People live like this. I called my [00:20:30] dad, I was like, yo, we have unlimited pto. And he was like, that doesn’t exist. And I was like, and then we have free healthcare. He’s like, what?

[00:20:36] No, there’s a fake company. Send me the. You know, and like, he could not believe it. And once I was in, I remember talking to my dad and he was like, got into a serious tone and he is like, now that you have a little bit of an opportunity, what are you gonna do with it? And it was a, a rhetorical question. And once I was in, I started studying, like learning more about tech in general.

[00:20:57] And I, I decided in that, I’ve [00:21:00] always been obsessed with Kobe and his work ethic, and for me, I always wanted to be Kobe at something, right? And sports wasn’t gonna be that thing. I was like, you know, my jumper’s not that good. I can’t really go to the basket like that. Like that’s not gonna be the path. So I have to find something else.

[00:21:16] And for me, being in tech, and that was gonna be my thing. So post that, we get acquired by Pluralsight after that, and Pluralsight’s based in Salt Lake. Large acquisition. So I ended up moving to Salt Lake City and then I switched into [00:21:30] sales. Cause I had a mentor, Andy Rotten, who was an Autodesk, and then they brought him over to Pluralsight and he tells me, he’s like, you wanna be an entrepreneur, you gotta learn how to sell.

[00:21:39] So I move over into sales and like get that skill set. So I ended up doing that at Pluralsight. Then I went to LinkedIn in San Francisco, and then I led a sales team for Andy at Schmoop in Scottsdale before going back to product actually at a product consultancy where I was a product manager. Building products for early stage companies, and that’s really where my confidence [00:22:00] started to come up was building for these early pre-seed to series A companies and the realization that everything is built with duct tape.

[00:22:08] So if these people can do it, I can do it too. I think really going kind of behind the curtain is, is really what exposed me and kind of made everything feel.

[00:22:16] Dan: Cool. Well that sounds like you had a series of masterclass for your career, which you see a lot of out of entrepreneurs. You see that it’s almost like they have a vision of that and they reverse engineer what are the things I probably wanna be exposed to or work on. [00:22:30] So tell us, where did Talisman come from? What was the origin of this idea, of this concept?

[00:22:36] Chiko Chingaya: First time I ever used a password manager was last pass at Pluralsight. And I thought it was a brilliant idea because I was always forgetting my passwords, you know, like I was like, oh, this is sick. I’ve been waiting for this.

[00:22:46] And when a product hits you like that, it’s like a freight train. I dunno if you’ve had that feeling where you use something and you’re like, this is exactly what I was looking for and needed in that moment, and that I never forgot that. And for me, I always wanted to start a B2B SaaS company because [00:23:00] I thought my skillset was built.

[00:23:02] I thought having a product background, having the sales background made me an interesting person to start a company because usually you have people lean one way or the other. Right? And I thought, okay, I can understand both perspectives. And I was leading a team fast forward at Schoo with, I think there was like 12 or 13 people on the team.

[00:23:20] Every time we hired somebody, we had to call our office manager. And be like, Hey Megan, this person is starting. Can we add them to the stuff that they need to be [00:23:30] added to? I don’t know, like who’s got access to that or how any of that works. And then the person would start, and then our, we had this IT resource that came to the office like twice a week.

[00:23:39] And they would come, they’d set ’em up on last pass and be like, okay, here it is. And people were always confused how to use it. They were like, I think the password’s in there. How? How does this work? And I was watching all of this happen and then the pandemic hit as I’m getting this kind of context. And that’s when I called Mike, I was drinking wine and watching Shark Tank.

[00:23:57] And I called Mike, who’s now my co-founder, and I [00:24:00] was like, dude, access Management stinks. How do you guys do it? And he was at McKesson. I was like, how do you do it at McKesson? Like if somebody starts, what do you guys do? And he was like, oh, I don’t know. I think they just like send emails and like communicate with it and go back and forth.

[00:24:13] And we were. That kind of sucks, right? Like there’s gotta be like a, a better way. So we started doing some research and that’s when we figured out basically the first generation of SaaS management tools were out there. People had had this idea before, which to me was a good sign. It was like, okay, cool, somebody’s chasing this market.

[00:24:28] But what we [00:24:30] realized was that all of them were doing the exact same thing. They were basically API farms. So what I mean, They were basically integrating with all these different tools and bringing the information in and putting it into a spreadsheet, essentially. Pretty spreadsheet, and people could look at it and see the information, but they couldn’t control, Hey, I wanna add somebody to this tool.

[00:24:47] I wanna remove somebody from this tool. They weren’t getting the answers to the core questions that they had, like, Hey, what can I do And cut to save money. In a just in time way, and that’s where we started to see opportunity because to us the [00:25:00] job to be done wasn’t to give you a spreadsheet and make it pretty and present it to you.

[00:25:04] The job to be done was to give you answers to questions you haven’t even thought of yet by analyzing what’s going on with your software.

[00:25:12] Dan: Brilliant. So I’m sure there are many ideas that emerge from drinking wine and watching Shark Tank, but how do you go from this epiphany that you had with your co-founder to the time or the moment or where the definitive like, let’s just go do this. What was the [00:25:30] catalyst for like, okay, let’s go build a company for this.

[00:25:33] Chiko Chingaya: Yeah, and actually shout out to Shark Tank. Again, it was the numbers. So what we saw was how much can we charge for this? Actually, no, take a step back from that. The actual epiphany was whether it’s technically feasible. So for me, there were two things I wanted to know.

[00:25:47] One, can it be done and two, can you make money? Or kind of the, the two questions in that order. So what we actually did was Mike and I, neither of us were developers. So what I did is I, I had a friend that was a developer, so I said, look, we’ll give you [00:26:00] 500 bucks and what we want you to do is to write basically a research paper on if we wanted to do this, how would we get it done from a technical perspective, and is it feasible or is it not?

[00:26:12] So shout out to. And he went and he did that work. And when he brought it back to us, it was very clear to me that technically it was feasible and it could be done. And then at that point, it was a question of what are other people charging for this type of service and where do we see a sliver in the market for this [00:26:30] particular product?

[00:26:30] And for us, we were like, oh. SMB and mid-market is largely forgotten about from an analytics standpoint because the typical buyer of an analytics tool is going to be specialized, right? So like a CFO or like a finance person or something like that. So if you’re gonna make something for this particular space, it has to be something that’s very user friendly.

[00:26:49] And attacking it from a different perspective than an analytics user. So once we had that kind of differentiation and like clarity on who we wanted the user to be, the first [00:27:00] thing we did was go hire a product researcher. Um, and this is where the context from working at a product consultancy came in.

[00:27:07] Because I, I kind of had the product development roadmap trained into me. So, you know, after doing the research for about four months and spending savings and other things to kind of do this work and get it done, it was clear to us that we thought there was an opportunity here to build a company, at the very least that would make us successful, but potentially have venture outcomes, [00:27:30] which are not always the same.

[00:27:32] Dan: No, that’s definitely true. Very logical sound approach. What was the thing that said we gotta do this full-time?

[00:27:40] Chiko Chingaya: After the four months of research, I was still working actually at, I was at Sidebench at this point, the product consultancy. And I was trying to do both at that time, like I was trying to juggle at both and, and make it work.

[00:27:55] And I remember I was driving my car. And I [00:28:00] had to stop that in 20 years. If I wake up, will this job that has afforded me this car have been worth it? Right? And the car just represents like the nice things that you can get as a result of like whatever job that you’re working. But really the, the question was like, what is worth it to me?

[00:28:17] Me pursuing this opportunity and seeing where I can go with. Or maintaining the fruits of this job because at that point, that’s why I hadn’t gotten full of time, is like being an entrepreneur is a tremendous amount of sacrifice. [00:28:30] And I wanted to go in with my eyes wide open and make a choice as opposed to stumbling in and then being surprised at the result.

[00:28:37] And after talking to like the family and other people, and then also starting to see through the interviews that we were. Which I encourage everybody to do. That was probably one of the best things that we did, was just go talk to folks and record it and then analyze it. It became clear that there was no path if I wanted to really make this happen, but going full-time and I need to stop protecting what I have so [00:29:00] far because my goals in life were much larger than that.

[00:29:03] So I need to be able to like let certain things go that I’m protecting in order to go get the thing that maybe is waiting for me on the other side.

[00:29:11] Dan: Pretty rational and pretty, uh, deliberate and intentional, which is where you need to be. Startups are not dip the toe, they’re jumping the deep end for sure. So tell us a little bit more about Talisman itself. So how does it work? You mentioned a little bit before about buyer or decision maker versus user. Tell us a little bit about how does [00:29:30] it, how does it show up at your customer?

[00:29:32] Chiko Chingaya: The best way is to use like a super tangible example. So imagine you are a hundred person FinTech. There’s definitely gonna be chaos in your software stack.

[00:29:42] I’ll give you one example. We talked to a company that a hundred people, they’re series C now. I think when we talked to them, they might have been series B, but they had over 85 apps that they discovered were being used in the organization and paid for in some capacity. And what they were doing was they had hired an outside IT team to handle [00:30:00] what they call managed services.

[00:30:02] So what that is usually is, hey, we’re gonna manage your software stack. If anybody needs access, if anything needs to change, we’ll take care of it. But the way that this process often works is that you’ll file a ticket and it’ll, you know, be like, Hey, I’m Dan and I want Sarah, who’s starting next week to be set up with these different tools.

[00:30:20] And then they’ll execute on that. But it may fall through the crack or it may be delayed based on what other things that they have on the docket at that time. Now with [00:30:30] Talisman, the way that this works is Dan logs in to Talisman. Talisman is integrated with all of Dan’s software tools, and this is kind of where the special piece of Talisman really is.

[00:30:42] Is we’ve built technology that allows companies, regardless of licensed tier, to have access to provisioning and deprovisioning, which is adding and removing users. So why that’s important is, let’s say you use Slack. In order to have provisioning and deprovisioning, you need to have an enterprise tier license.

[00:30:57] So for a lot of companies, even if I go get [00:31:00] Okta and I’m like, cool, it has the functionality to allow that, you still can’t do it because you’re license to Slack is not of a certain tier. So what we’ve done with Talisman is we’ve built tools that allow you to integrate and be able to do that regardless of your license tier.

[00:31:14] So effectively, Dan would be able to go in, create a team, let’s call it the investment. On the investment team, I want them to have these 10 applications that they have access to. When anybody starts on the investment team, all Dan has to do is log into Talisman and drag [00:31:30] Sarah. Literally, we have a drag and drop feature to make it a little bit more fun because we’re not, so you can actually drag Sarah’s profile onto that team and then automatically all those tools get provision.

[00:31:41] And access is sent to Sarah’s new email, which we create automatically because when you add somebody to your company, we detect it in your HR system, then we automatically create a Gmail for them. And then as soon as you pick what team you want them added to, all those tools get automatically provisioned.

[00:31:57] And we also tell you, On a profile [00:32:00] page that we create for that individual, how much it’s costing you for all of this to occur, right? So now you can go to a singular profile page, like a Facebook page that has Sarah, here’s the team, Sarah’s on. Here’s the tool Sarah has access to. Here’s the level of access that Sarah has access to.

[00:32:14] Here’s how much it costs per tool for Sarah, and here’s what credit card is actually being processed to pay for these different tools.

[00:32:22] Dan: That sounds awesome. I know that I, I work at a large company in provisioning software and we have single sign on and a bunch of other [00:32:30] stuff, and so it is very much the process.

[00:32:32] You talk about sometimes there’s questions about what they need and do they need it. This sounds very elegant for sure. In startups, we think about points of embarkation or beachheads or early adopters. How do you think about the marketplace? Again, you mentioned sort of maybe some of the tech ecosystem of companies that are a certain size. Who’s sort of your ideal customer now?

[00:32:53] Chiko Chingaya: Large SaaS footprints, so specifically agencies are a big one. And then startups of course, [00:33:00] because they’re always just picking stuff up as they go along. So agencies, especially like advertising development shops, marketing agencies, they have really large SaaS footprints and a bunch of different stakeholders.

[00:33:12] So they in particular, Always struggle with this type of issue. So that’s actually where we’re finding a ton of success. Like last week, we onboarded a customer and they had 20 full-time employees, and then they have like an additional 20 or 30 contractors. We saved them $14,000 in 30 minutes because basically we were able to [00:33:30] identify all of these things they’d forgotten about.

[00:33:32] Over the years, different pieces of software, different people are signed up for and kind of expose that to. And they’re, they’re an agency. So for us we saw real opportunity for companies that just have like large SaaS footprints and don’t know how to be handling. Cause they tried Excel sheets. But the issue with an Excel sheet is it’s not connected.

[00:33:49] So any change takes place. It’s already old, immediately. Right. So like as soon as you get into that meeting to present it to your team, something’s probably changed. And that’s where we really see opportunity. [00:34:00] With the initial product is, Hey, let us help you manage this and make sure like you don’t have anything slipping through the cracks.

[00:34:06] Because I, the data from Gartner says about 30% of your SAS spend if your company is wasted, unused, and underutilized licenses. So if you think about that, if you could put that back in your pocket for them, that was an additional contractor overseas. That was basically all the laptops they wanted to buy for all new employees coming in saved just as a result of catching issues with software.

[00:34:29] Dan: [00:34:30] These models can be so powerful. I’m a consumer person, so I always think about things like mint.com, right? That aggregation point to make it super easy to bring things together that otherwise are very disparate. How do you think about the opportunity or is there tension around like the SaaS providers themselves?

[00:34:49] For them you are providing to some degree a service, but at the same time, Is there a zero sum game where like your customer is saving money, means they’re making less revenue? Like, how do [00:35:00] you think about that part of the ecosystem with, with your company?

[00:35:03] Chiko Chingaya: That’s a really timely question cuz I was just talking to one of our angel investors is a product manager at Plaid and I was just talking to him about kind of the issues at Plaid that they ran into with the banks because for a long time they were not best friends, but, but now that’s kind of starting to come around and how we position ourselves proactively knowing that there’s gonna be some of those feelings that you just mentioned that may come up.

[00:35:24] And I think for me, I, I see two things. I see initially that we’re helping customers manage [00:35:30] their software. That’s where we’re gonna. But where we go from there is a tremendous vertical opportunity in the future. Right? I think sometimes people are real shortsighted in how markets today look, and if you look back 10 years ago, things were way different, right?

[00:35:44] Like Adobe was still doing, you can buy Photoshop. Now you just buy the software like that was only 10 years ago and now it’s like that’s an insane thing to even suggest to be like, well, no, it’s a subscription. Of course. So the way that I see this market growing is there’s a ton of [00:36:00] companies trying to be marketplaces where they work with the SaaS providers and they put the stuff on, and the SaaS providers don’t wanna do that.

[00:36:06] And it makes sense, right? They wanna maintain power and ownership of their own customers. But the way that I look at it is, look, we’re gonna help customers manage and build. In SaaS because they know they’re only spending what they need to be spending. But what that also allows us to do is give more opportunities to other companies in the SaaS ecosystem.

[00:36:24] So maybe in the past it was like, if I have a big budget, I get put in front of customers. But I really [00:36:30] think of what we wanna do in the future as being the Michelin of SaaS software, whereas the Michelin of restaurants exists, right? You trust them, they’re gonna go find some stuff that you’ve never heard of, and they’re gonna be like, this is a two-star Michelin.

[00:36:43] And you’re like, whoa, it’s in a back alley in Chinatown and New York. Like that’s, to me, the beauty of the internet and and software becoming more available and people having the ability to build things is that we’re gonna get better products as consumers, as businesses. And I see our job in the future is really.[00:37:00]

[00:37:00] Creating opportunity for companies maybe that would’ve been forgotten about or not looked at by customers as something to look at. Because not only are we gonna provide context through our platform, but I also want to start doing real reviews, right? So for 50 person company, what CRM should I be using?

[00:37:15] We have no skin in the game, so we put something together and we give you some suggestions, right? Hey, like if you are in this kind of space, look at this, look at this. So I think there’s a protectionist view that they can look at it from, but I think. In business that ever looks at [00:37:30] things from that view, eventually gets disrupted anyway.

[00:37:32] So it’s either eventually you play. Or other people are gonna get that opportunity and then you’re gonna show up late to play ball and there’s gonna be lost opportunity for you.

[00:37:41] Dan: I like that It’s a very savvy perspective of the and and the win-win, not the or. So that’s a great visionary perspectives that the good founders have. Well, we’re gonna take another short break and we will be right back with Chiko Jenaya of Talisman.

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[00:38:37] Dan: So we’re back with Chiko Chingaya from Talisman. So Chiko, the question I often ask founders who come on the show, companies doing great so far, made a lot of great progress. Let’s think in the future. So Dan comes back for his founders Unfound update in five years, 10 years, whenever, and you’re like, Dan, we crushed it. We are successful. What does that [00:39:00] mean? What does it look like for Talisman to be a success? What does that feel like for you? What is your north star.

[00:39:05] Chiko Chingaya: I think we own the relationship between companies and their software. What I mean by that is, is we effectively have become an operating system for software. So it’s, it’s, everything is housed there, right? So the way that I think about, it’s like the three pillars, evaluate, manage, and optimize. And we’re doing that really well. So we’re helping you evaluate software tools, find the right things that you should be using. Once you’ve found these things, we’re helping you manage them. [00:39:30] Make sure the right people have access to the right things.

[00:39:32] You know, our Slack bot and team spot is out there and employees are interacting with the system and getting what they need when they need it. Leadership is getting the right type of reports and understanding and insights, and we’re optimizing it. So we’re making sure you’re only spending what you should be only right.

[00:39:46] People have access to the right and we’ve the footprint of SA broadly for SaaS companies right now. If you think about the discovery process for new SaaS tools, it’s kinda. There’s a few big players that kind of own [00:40:00] these relationships, but I think boutique software is something no one ever talks about.

[00:40:03] Like what if that is the future? Right? Like one thing you talked to Dan off off air and you mentioned was this software that I use for podcasting is really good at like these things that I need it to do. And it does those things really well. I, I think that there’s a world in which there’s a bunch of different boutique software.

[00:40:21] That people can utilize to do different things. But the issue with those tools today is the fact that they have to be managed, right? You don’t want 50,000 things because you are [00:40:30] having to micromanage all of them. But imagine if you didn’t, if it was a really slick and straightforward experience. And then from a financial perspective, I think.

[00:40:39] We’re doing massive revenues, right? We’re over a hundred million a r r. We’re trending towards becoming a a publicly traded company. And one thing that’s super important to me and always been important to me is I wanna build an aspirational black led tech company. And I think what that means to me, you know, like Stripe, right?

[00:40:59] People talk about that [00:41:00] company like, yo, I’m trying to like go work there. And because they’re building brilliant products and like great technology and it’s a. I think there’s a lot of brilliant black led tech companies that are bubbling up, but I wanna be part of those that are aspirational in nature, where everybody’s like, I wanna go work there because of the things that they make and what they stand for.

[00:41:20] And of course, success is a, a part of that equation, right? People want to go be a part of something that’s working. And if we can also be pushing the envelope as we do that, then that’s a beautiful outcome [00:41:30] and, and something for people to, to look towards. So yeah, I think that’s what it would be in, in five to 10 years.

[00:41:35] Dan: I love that you definitely start thinking into the future. You have that looking around corners and seeing what’s next with, for most founders, you go from this product market fit and the urgency of like, how do we get this going? And then once it starts going, you gotta be thinking about, okay, what’s next?

[00:41:49] What’s next? So I love that. Let’s switch gears a little bit. Let’s talk about fundraising. What’s fundraising been like for you so far? How have you funded the company? What’s the experience been [00:42:00] like?

[00:42:00] Chiko Chingaya: Wild. I think for. The first time that we tried, so Mike and I actually pulled money from our savings in our 401k to get started because at first we were like, let’s just get a dev.

[00:42:11] To like build this thing and like do whatever. But we didn’t end up doing that because I met with one of my friends who I met through. And this is another kind of pro tip, if I was to give one to anyone, is relationships that you make through work, whether that’s like at the place that you work or with clients.

[00:42:29] That you meet [00:42:30] become integral in the future. No better example of this than I, I worked with a client in Sweden. It was a marketing agency, and when I was starting Talisman, I actually went to him and I was like, dude, I can’t afford you outta here. You work with BMW and people like that, but here’s what I’m trying to do.

[00:42:44] Any suggestions or thoughts? And he goes, I’ll do it for five grand. I’ll do like a full breakdown for you guys and I’ll work with you cuz I like you and I wanna support you. And this has been a client of ours. So it, it’s those type of relationships and that’s kind of how we started. And the first money was [00:43:00] 401K and, and savings.

[00:43:01] And then after that we needed more cash. So, We decided to do a friends and family round, but being immigrants, that was kind of my network from a, a friends and family perspective. So it’s not like there was a ton of money swimming around, but we ended up doing a little presentation at my house and invited a bunch of people.

[00:43:15] Mike and I went to Costco and we spent like 500 bucks. We, we grill up, have everybody in, and we walked out of there with $25,000. That it was remarkable to me. I remember saying to Mike before we started, I said, look, if we get five grand out of [00:43:30] this, this was a great outcome. Like this is fantastic. Worked out with much more than that and then ended up raising like a little over 40 K for the friends and family round, which was ridiculous.

[00:43:40] Dan: That’s super impressive though, to think about, you know, all these crowdfunding sites and all these places where you could raise money. It’s just like throw a party in the backyard.

[00:43:51] Chiko Chingaya: Yeah, that’s exactly, sounds so comical in retrospect. But yeah, that’s essentially the. Mike is from Tigray in Ethiopia, [00:44:00] and they have an association.

[00:44:01] It’s like a, I think a lot of African communities have this where it’s like an investment group and they’ve never invested in anything other than real estate until us, but they wrote us a $50,000 check from that community, which was like, we were just shocked, honored, scared. All of the emotions that come out of that.

[00:44:18] So for us, that’s why this business means so much because these people believed in us, right? Like our own, you hear stories all the time about communities not believing and that kind of thing, but in us that hasn’t been true. They’ve [00:44:30] believed in us and our parents invested and. Our friends’ parents have invested and, and that was kind of our initial path.

[00:44:36] And then actually our first institutional check came from Twitter. So I was on Twitter and I reached out to Pat Matthews from Active Capital and I just chatted him up and told him what we were working on. And we talked probably for weeks and weeks and weeks. And you probably tell your founders this, Dan, but we are really good about sending updates, right?

[00:44:54] They’re consistent, they’re all the time. They’re not the best. They can definitely be better. But one thing that Pat said to me, I’m [00:45:00] writing you this check because of how consistent and thorough your updates have been. Right? He was like, I’ve noticed you never miss one. They’re always there, whether it’s good news or bad news, the information keeps flowing and coming.

[00:45:12] And this is before like we really built anything or had any traction, so it wasn’t much to say, but we were always trying to make something happen. So after that, we then got funds from the CEO of Digital Tutors, which is the first company that I worked. He wrote us a really large check, and then we got into Techstars.[00:45:30]

[00:45:30] So that’s kind of the, the money up to this point is right close to 500 K so far. And then now we’re raising a million dollar preseason round, and we have some angels that are already in. We’ve got some institutional money soft circled at the moment, and kind of from a perspective where we are today.

[00:45:48] We’ve got four paying customers as of our beta going live in February. Four companies onboard paying, and then we have six others that we’re kind of our alpha design partners. So about 10 companies using the [00:46:00] the platform today with a lot more in the pipeline to come. And that’s just mainly for our span functionality, but fundraising is outside of those kind of core details.

[00:46:09] Super difficult. It’s a full-time job. It’s very stressful. It’s a lot of. And it’s the worst kind of game because you don’t know the rules. What I mean by that is when you go play basketball, if you are shooting, you know that’s the hoop. And then if somebody hits your arm, that’s a foul. But in fundraising, it’s so undefined and there’s no lines.

[00:46:28] There’s no rules. It is what [00:46:30] it is that it’s difficult to deal with the uncertainty and the unknowns as you go through it, and it can be an extremely difficult process. So for founders that choose to. Everybody tells you this, but you don’t know that it’s true until you’ve experienced it yourself.

[00:46:44] Dan: That’s a great story and lots of, lots of interesting insights there. I mean, this idea of communities who connect to you as the founders, so that’s, that’s an interesting one. And there are many communities and cultures where that’s been established [00:47:00] for many, many generations. Right. This idea we collectively pool and then support ourselves and, and those who wanna branch out.

[00:47:07] So that’s cool. This idea of Twitter, And a lot of people who get into the fundraising space for the first time don’t realize it isn’t really necessarily about the pitch. I mean, there isn’t, there are definitely occasions where the pitch blows people away, but I love the saying that people say investors don’t invest in a point.

[00:47:25] They invest in a line. They wanna see momentum, consistency. How [00:47:30] are you handling adversity? How are you being transparent about, yeah, this didn’t go well or this is what we learned, right? Or Wow, look how to authentically be celebrating the things that are happening. So that’s a great shout out that your first investor was like, Chiko and Mike are on, on the ball here.

[00:47:45] Cuz it also gives them a sense of. Hey, if I’m gonna bet on this person, I don’t wanna not hear from them. And then three years down the road, LA we’re outta money and we’re going outta business. Right? They wanna know that you’re willing to sort of be vulnerable and transparent and be [00:48:00] open. So that’s really cool.

[00:48:02] How does the world remind you that you’re a black founder? Either in a positive way or a challenging way?

[00:48:10] Chiko Chingaya: The worst, I think, is like feeling crazy, if that makes sense. Right? Because like sometimes you feel like, am I not getting these opportunities because I’m not good enough? Or am I not getting them because of what I look like?

[00:48:22] And like now you feel crazy because you’re like, I think some of these are. What I look like has an effect on it. But if you were to articulate [00:48:30] that out loud, people would be like, no, no, no. That’s not what it is. It’s this, this, and this. And you’re like, am I insane? What is it? And that’s just the worst part of it.

[00:48:38] So I think dealing with that is number one. But I, I don’t know. I think that, that if, if I did look different, the opportunities would be different. Now, do I think it’s a conscious decision on the part of the people? Are in positions of power to make decisions? No, some of them maybe, but like I think for most of them it’s a subconscious bias thing.

[00:48:57] Like if I understand, I think of this as like [00:49:00] when we do marketing for our product, we try to find proxies to explain what we do to you so that you just pick it up immediately When you see it, it’s easier for you to understand there’s less cognitive load as you make that decision. But I think when they’re looking at somebody from a different background that’s been through different things and they’re used to pattern.

[00:49:19] The pattern is never gonna fit when you talk, you know, like what you’re expecting and what you’re used to seeing is never gonna be what I’m giving you. And I think that causes a ton of friction right now. You’re really thinking through certain [00:49:30] things that with other founders maybe you wouldn’t have even thought to think about.

[00:49:34] And I think that cognitive load leads people to go, ah, I guess this deal just isn’t for me. Right, because now it’s, it’s, it’s a different sort of cognitive load than what you’re used to. So immediately your brain tells you, well, that’s because something is wrong. And I think those are the kind of things that hurt black founders, is that kind of interaction and process.

[00:49:51] Because I look at the things that I’ve been through and I’m like, obviously I’m biased, but I’m like, that’s the guy I’m betting on. You know, like given a choice, based on background, what he’s been through, [00:50:00] experience, all these things. I. Put him in a lineup. I’m betting on that guy. But I think depending on what your context is, you may see it a little bit differently.

[00:50:08] You may see it as risk and all these other things, but I try to keep it in perspective and not let it get me down or let me operate from a place of that’s the case, but you can never truly forget about it.

[00:50:19] Dan: Yeah. I mean, you just summed up why we do this podcast because when people come through, I know for me personally, when I’m done talking to them like I want to bet on them just because what you talked about, [00:50:30] the life journey.

[00:50:31] Having to have this extra cognitive load or these extra opaque signals. Right. I don’t know. What is it? It feels like I’ve, I’m checking all the boxes, so this is an awesome conversation that the question we like to end with is the retrospective. And so Chiko, if you could go back to the, the pre-startup version of yourself so that young man is maybe got a spark, uh, in his eye about doing something in the [00:51:00] startup world. What advice would you give him? What to do, what not to do, what to look out for.

[00:51:08] Chiko Chingaya: I believe this, but I’m also like, it’s okay if you, if you don’t do it, but I think it would be helpful. Learn to code a little bit if you’re gonna be a tech founder. That’s just my opinion, right. So I, I learned SQL and I learned a little bit of, And it’s been immensely helpful as we build product because I understand the schema and, and the thing with [00:51:30] technology is, the way that I look at it is like, you know, when someone speaks multiple languages, they understand what they’re saying in their head and then they translate it using words into something that someone else can, can understand.

[00:51:41] The way that I think about it is I’ve learned the stuff that goes on in your head, but I don’t necessarily know how to turn it into the language that I can deliver to somebody else. And I think that that is a, a huge benefit to be able. Understand those things. So learning to code and learning to be a little bit technical is super helpful.

[00:51:57] And I also saw this at side bench working with Pree [00:52:00] to series A. When there was a non-technical C E O I always felt like we could do a crap job and it wouldn’t be a big deal cause they can’t really, like the things that they’re looking for are all front end and like that kind of stuff. And I’m like, dude, you should be worried about what’s going on back there.

[00:52:13] So I think if you wanna be in the tech space, specif. Technical context is important and there’s a lot of free resources out there. I’ll plug Pluralsight. I used to work there, so if you can look there. Code Academy is also another great resource. I think they’re pretty affordable. And then I would say on top of that [00:52:30] research, just like talk to people about whatever it is that you’re trying to build.

[00:52:34] And the Mom test is a great guide for this, and I think you can get it on Amazon or something, or even online or whatever, but it’s a great book about how to talk to users about what you’re trying to. Because I think it saves you a lot of time cause there’s certain things that you’re gonna start off thinking you need to do and then realize very quickly after speaking to people that you didn’t need to do them.

[00:52:54] So do that. And then last but not least, it’s not gonna be a good day every day. [00:53:00] The journey is mostly Ls and then a few wins here and there that mean everything. So if you can get used to kind of living. Ambiguity. Just know that that’s normal and like that’s just a process. You know? It seems that way, at least from my personal experience in speaking to other founders.

[00:53:19] Dan: I love that. And the coding one, I think is one that nobody’s really brought up before, so that’s pretty insightful. Well, this is awesome. So Chiko, before we go, we always like to leave [00:53:30] UN foundation, a call to action. What ways can we be helpful to you, to talisman to what you’re working on?

[00:53:37] Chiko Chingaya: Number one. Thanks for having me. This is awesome. Always fun to talk about this kind of thing, and I think. For me, Dan, if I would’ve had this podcast to look at, I used to listen to how I build this quite a bit, but when there would be like a black founder on there, I was always excited. So having a podcast filled with them, I’m listening to some of your old ones as well, so thank you for that.

[00:53:55] And secondly, in terms of help, one, we’re raising rounds of accredited investors [00:54:00] or you know, connections to institutional or even angel investors. Feel free to shoot me an email. Chiko, get Tasman dot. We’re actively raising our round, trying to close it out in the next month. So let me know there, and then second come in, come use the tool, utilize Talisman.

[00:54:14] We think that we’ve built something awesome. I get up every day excited to work on it and add more features and continue to make it better over time and it’s something that I hope to do over the next 10 years and, and longer. So I think space that we’re working in is super compelling. It’s only going to grow, so [00:54:30] having a ton of fun building it. Love for everyone listening to be a customer of ours. So…

[00:54:34] Dan: Awesome. And you wanna tell us the handles of your social media or website?

[00:54:39] Chiko Chingaya: Yes sir. So website is get tasman.com, G E T T A L I S M A N.com. And then all the socials are @GetTalisman, so Twitter, and then you can also find us on LinkedIn at Talisman. So give us uh, a like or a follow, I forget what it’s on LinkedIn. And then same thing [00:55:00] across the socials on, on Twitter as well.

[00:55:02] Dan: Awesome. Well thank you so much, Chiko. This has been a great conversation. I really enjoyed it. Thanks so much again for making the time.

[00:55:08] Chiko Chingaya: No problem. Thanks for having me.

[00:55:10] Dan: We’d like to thank our guest, Chiko Chingaya and our sponsor AfriBlocks.

[00:55:14] This podcast was produced by me, Dan Kihanya, with audio editing and production by We Edit Podcasts.

[00:55:20] Don’t forget to subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts, or simply go to foundersunfound.com/listento. That’s Listen T-O. And follow us on [00:55:30] Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn @foundersunfound. And do make sure to tell your friends about us. We so appreciate every new listener.

[00:55:37] Thanks so much for tuning in. I am Dan Kihanya, and you’ve been listening to Founders Unfound.