In all honesty I’m pretty shocked about this one. If you haven’t heard of eShares let me drop a little knowledge before we continue since we’ve been a customer for years and I really like what they do. eShares (errr, Carta) allows startups to easily manage and grant equity all through a super slick, easy to use platform. They essentially led the charge in getting rid of paper in the entire startup fundraising process outside of the Term Sheet itself…which now gets signed with DocuSign so I guess that happened along the way too.
The first year that we used eShares I found myself constantly going to eShares.com, and then remembering – oh wait, I need to go to eSharesInc.com which uh, obviously isn’t nearly as good. That being said, as a customer it didn’t impact my decision to use them, most of the other startup founders we knew at the time used eShares, it was clearly the popular option, so we went with it.
That was way back in 2014 when eShares had only raised around $8.8M, since then they’ve gone on to raise over $67M and they are (with a whopping $42M coming in last month), and without a doubt, they are most well-known company for startups that want to manage the equity process digitally.
While eShares has been kicking ass and taking names, they never made the move to eShares.com. So you would imagine that the owner of the .COM would notice eShares massive funding rounds and raise the price. I’m guessing this is what happened…and I’m guessing the price went too high since eShares announced this week they have rebranded to Carta (along with the corresponding Carta.com) after they failed to get eShares.com:
It’s an interesting move in two ways:
- Clearly not owning the exact-match .COM of their name didn’t hold them back. They raised over $67M and become the category leader by a massive margin without owning their corresponding.com
- By the time they probably had enough money to buy the .COM, their business had grown to a point where a rebrand was in order since they wanted to expand beyond the electronic issuance of shares
I’m a proud Carta customer (boom – just used the new name!) and know many other founders that like me, swear by it. Still I have to say, it feels like they could have picked a better name to brand on, Carta just doesn’t have a great ring to me, at the same time eShares did but only for what they were doing at the time. Still, I’m interested to hear what my readers think, is Carta a good rebrand or are there better names out there?
I want to hear from you, comment and let your voice be heard!