Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Legal Analyst, Hrm
Educator, Management Consultant & Trainer
Senior Services Manager
Korgaonkar K A

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Hello everyone, I am a founder and ceo of a company which has been providing software development and digital marketing services. The company also created a startup product; a mobile app. I founded this company along with a friend. The company is registered in his name and not mine. (no partnership agreement because of mutual trustworthy friendship, and in his name because there were some documentation issue at that time and we wanted to get it registered fast).
I am now applying for a scholarship and immigration as well. The question is, how to show my experience of this company? what shall be the experience letter? Should I mention the designation as being Founder & CEO? (A sub question; is it better to just write "Founder" or just "CEO" or "Founder & CEO" is the best? keeping in view the startup and small business thing in mind) Whatever the designation, from above choices, mentioned in the letter, who will sign the letterhead?

From Pakistan, Lahore
Dear friend,
I recommend you taking backdated appointment letter from your friend. Show the designation as "Director". Obtain employment certificate from your friend that mentions date of joining, last working day etc.
Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Dear Dinesh ji,
Hope you are doing well.
It seems to me the company is a proprietary firm and the friend of queriest is a sole proprietor of the company.
In this case, there can not be any sort of agreement between the queriest and his friend. It is a benami transaction between both of them. The queriest can not be called or considered him self as a founder. Also, he can not be designated as "Director" in proprietary firm. He can be a "CEO" of company with due documentations signed by the proprietor.
Hope you will have assent with me.

From India, Mumbai
Yes, KORGAONKAR is right. This is the case. OK, so can I write "Co-Founder & CEO" on the letter and get it signed by the other "Co-Founder & Director"? The thing is, I want to mention that I founded the company and not merely served on job as CEO or whatever.
Another question, just for knowledge, what will be the experience letter of the other person in such case who is the sole proprietor? Who will sign that?

From Pakistan, Lahore
You can not be a Founder or Co-Founder in the eyes of Law.
What legal proof you have that you are a Founder or Co-Founder? If at all you founded the company, what stake you have now in this company legally which is a sole proprietary. You can be a Founder or Co-Founder in the eyes of public but not in the eyes of Law, like many politicians are having number of (benami) companies.
For sole proprietor, there is no experience certificate to him by any body. He has to give self declaration of sole proprietary, date of it's commencement with documentary proof such as Gumasta registration or any other registration alike, bank account details etc.

From India, Mumbai
Dear Mr. Zaidi,
Your query is not about experience letter from an employer to an employee for the service rendered by him on some particular assignment. Your need is for the purpose based experience of a founder and CEO. So, a passing reference of the purpose, "I am now applying for a scholarship and immigration as well" is not sufficient to advise you appropriately, unless you give clear description of the nature of scholarship and its conditions. Not only that, if experience letter is necessary for the purpose of immigration, that may be of separate nature.
So, instead of putting a question of genric nature, be clear in your purpose whether for a specific type scholarship or for immigration purpose.
However, so far as your main question is concerned, "who will sign the experience letter of a "Founder & CEO", naturally the proprietor of the firm, not you, will sign, if experience of a responsible position is to be shown.

From India, Delhi
The purpose is off course to show that I have founded a startup. Solely for a scholarship application, in which I have mentioned this thing in the Statement of Purpose. Leave aside the immigration thing at the moment. What do you suggest now? What can be done if I have to prove them that I founded the company?
(By the way, for scholarship, university is abroad and I do not think that the university is going to verify that legally. Maximum they can do is to visit official website, where they will find the truth about me being founder in the About section.)

From Pakistan, Lahore
Mr. Zaidi,

I don't think your approach is correct, as in normal course, the requirement of the foreign institutions/ organizations offering scholarships is not the experience certificates, but self write ups of the achievements of the candidates through their applications.Since thousands of applications throng for such scholarships, I don't think there is any such system of verification of the experience certificates from the organizations before grant of scholarships due to paucity of time with them, as possibility of the experience certificates being fake cannot be ruled out in case of several candidates. They normally judge the capabilities from the structural effectiveness of the applications to short-list the candidates. That I can say from my own personal experience, as applications of the some foreign candidates, some years back, were drafted by me also, as a freelancer conultant for them. Rest of the job is completed on the presentations of the candidates during their interview/ counselling sessions. So your application should be so effectively impressive to make the selectors believe on your own statement, rather than experience certificate.

However, if you still believe that your experience certificate can work, or there is any specific requirement of the scholarship application, I have already expressed my opinion that the proprietor of the firm will sign the experience letter.

From India, Delhi
Respected PS DHINGRA ji,
Greetings of Ganesh Chaturthi!!!
I have questions to you Sir with due respect.
Can any proprietor certify that someone else is a Founder or Co-Founder of his Proprietary Firm? How any third person will be a Founder or Co-Founder of any Proprietary Firm?

From India, Mumbai
Dear sir,
Lets weigh aspects the way you count . Normally I do not comment on issues other than core HR/ER. But here I want to write few words as a personal friend of yours.
What is there in exp. certificate certifying you as Co-founder that would enable any scholarship or immigration certificate. You are CEO, and as a role holder, it enables you too and three much!!
Best wishes
RDS Yadav
Navtarng HR Services
[email protected]

From India, Delhi

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