We had the good fortune of connecting with Jang Lee and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jang, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I’ve had the opportunity to work for several early stage startup companies. This gave me the opportunity to work with a lot of amazing founders who were pursuing their dreams of building something big. My role in these companies were to (1) ensure that on our way to making the Founder’s dream a reality, we didn’t run out of money (2) build process to improve unit economics and (3) work cross functionally to address risk areas and improve the business. Living through this for over 10 years and having been a part of 4 fast growing startups, I realized my own dream. This was to use my experience and partner with founders and figure how to build and scale their business. I founded and launched Upround Partners with the sole purpose of using finance to help increase a company’s valuation.
What should our readers know about your business?
I launched Upround Partners to service early stage startup companies. I found that startup companies have trouble balancing supply and demand. Most forecasts are overly optimistic and overestimate demand. Because of this high demand, they over-purchase inventory. When these things don’t align, they face huge financial risk as they burn too much cash on marketing and also inventory. As CFO, I’ve had to balance these things carefully while trying to throttle growth. I believe this differentiates my services from anyone else. I’ve created a cohort based demand model that connect to a supply and operations model that can really monitor cash and help a company scale. I’ve worked for multiple startup companies and have developed a bunch of models and dashboards that could help any company scale.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Day 1: Santa Monica to experience the beach, third street promenade and eat at Tar and Roses and get some Joe’s Pizza Day 2: head to Miracle Mile area and Hollywood. Visit Farmers Market / Grove, head up Sunset Blvd and then to Hollywood. Get Pinks Hot Dogs and Animal. Day 3: KoreaTown and eat all day. Quarters for Korean BBQ Day 4: downtown LA, Staples Center to watch a game or Dodgers Stadium depending who is in season. Get bacon wrapped hot dogs from the carts and Sushi Zo. Day 5: In and out Buber near LAX and drop them off at their terminal.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There’s a bunch of people who have mentored and helped me throughout my career. I was 30 years old when I took on my first role as CFO. I worked for a CEO that was more than double my age that taught me how to structure debt and develop and implement strategy into the organization. I’ve also had the good fortune of working with highly successful CEOs that shaped who I am today.