This article is written by M.S.Sri Sai Kamalini, currently pursuing B.A.LLB (Hons) from School of law, SASTRA. This is an exhaustive article which deals with the various co-founding partnerships and the reason for the success of the partnership.


Partnerships have led to the creation of lots of successful businesses. Partners have equal responsibility in every aspect of business and they strive for the development of business together. The co-founding partners are a very important type of partners who work for the betterment of the business since it began. There are a lot of famous products and companies which were formed by co-founding partners which are very successful.

Co-founding Partnerships

The co-founding partners are very important for any company or business especially at the stage of beginning. They share the same goals and have the same ideas in their mind as the other partners involved in the partnership. The co-founding partners, in simple terms, are the partners who help in setting up any startup or business with the founder and they are involved in all aspects of the business from the beginning. The co-founder helps by providing either his skills or resources that are related to a particular business.

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There are various advantages in this method of partnership:

  • The partners will have a shared responsibility.
  • The co-founders will have great knowledge about the working of the company since they are part of it from the beginning.
  • They have similar ideas to develop the business and it will be advantageous for the company.
  • The decisions will not be arbitrary and it will always concern only about the development of the company.
  • The co-founders are of great help as they might have certain special skills or knowledge that is always needed for the development of the company.
  • The weakness of a co-founder is balanced by another and it is vice versa.
  • Leadership is very effective since there are a shared opinion and no arbitrary decision. Above

Top Co-founding Partnerships

Apple- Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak

Apple is the most famous technological company that was founded by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak in the year 1976. The company makes a variety of products ranging from cell phones, smartwatches, tablets to laptops. The brand is well known for various aspects like product designing and security. There was also another co-founder Ronald Wayne who sold his shares after twelve days of the incorporation of the company. The main reason for starting this company was to sell the Apple-I personal computer which was the idea of Steve Wozniak.

The company was incorporated in the year 1977 as Apple Inc. These founders were friends when they met in the year 1970 during their summer jobs. Steve Wozniak had very good knowledge about the creation of personal computers and Steve Jobs had great marketing skills and potential to sell the product which was the main reason for the success of their partnership.

Microsoft- Bill Gates and Paul Allen

Microsoft corporation is another famous multinational technology company. It was founded by Paul Allen and Bill Gates in 1975, to develop and sell BASIC interpreters for the Altair 8000. The founders were childhood friends and had the same ideas regarding the business. They wanted to utilize their knowledge in computer skills and wanted to create a business out of it. 

The name Microsoft, which is an abbreviation of micro software computers was suggested by Paul Allen. Paul Allen worked on the simulator while Bill Gates worked on the interpreter and they demonstrated their business idea to MITS (Micro Instrumentation Telemetry Systems) which accepted their idea. 

The company formed an agreement with ASCII Magazine in Japan, which led to the creation of its first international office of “ASCII Microsoft” in the year 1977. Paul Allen resigned from Microsoft in 1983 due to Hodgkin’s disease. Their common love for computers and programmes is an important factor which led to the success of this advantageous partnership.

HP- Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard

Hewlett and Packard is a famous information technology company that developed many components for testing instruments in the beginning. The company now manufactures various products like speakers, laptops, printers, and components for hardware and software. 

The company was founded by Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard in 1938 in their car garage. The company was incorporated in 1947 as Hewlett-Packard (HP). There is also a famous story about how the founders flipped coins to decide whether the company would be incorporated as Hewlett-Packard (HP) or Packard-Hewlett. 

The company was incorporated with Packard as the president who later handed his presidency to Hewlett in 1964 and he became a chairman. They involved them in every project of the company together and helped in succeeding in the projects. Their friendship and similar working pattern and strategy helped them to build a strong partnership. 

They have a management style that is famously known as ‘HP way’ which includes various principles like flexibility, innovation and trust and respect for individuals. Their friendship was the main reason for the success of this partnership.

Facebook- Mark Zuckerberg and his roommates

Facebook is a famous social networking service that is used by millions of people around the world. Facebook was founded by Mark Zuckerberg and his roommates Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz, and Chris Hughes. The membership of Facebook was only provided to Harvard students in the beginning. 

His roommates helped in developing the webpage and promoting it among the students. Zuckerberg’s senior in the Harvard, Cameron Winklevoss, Tyler Winklevoss, and Divya Narendra accused him of stealing his idea which was later decided by a lawsuit in the year 2008 where they later settled for 1.2 million shares even though the seniors were not co-founding partners the result of a lawsuit made them brains behind the concept. The company is also recently facing a lot of lawsuits for selling data of the users. Facebook was sued by the Australian commissioner for exposing the data of many users. The data included people’s name, date of birth, email address, city location and even in certain cases the friends list. The Guardian observed that the data collected was even used to build a software to influence voters in the American election. 

Ben & Jerry’s- Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield

Ben and Jerry’s is a famous company that manufactures various food products like ice cream, frozen yoghurt, and sorbet. The company was founded by Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield in 1978. Ben Cohen and Jerry Green were best friends from childhood. They both completed a correspondence course on making ice creams from Pennsylvania State University which was a starting point for this business startup. 

They opened an ice cream parlour with an investment of 12,000 dollars in a gas station in 1979. They shared a similar kind of passion for food and they also wanted to do something in return to the community they live in. They also built the world’s largest ice cream sundae in the year 1983.

They also established Ben & Jerry’s foundation in the year 1985 to provide welfare measures to the society. The company was later sold to Unilever in the year 2000 even though the name of founders still appears in the packaging of the products. Their friendship and shared notions of business ideas are the main reasons for the success of this partnership. 

Google- Larry Page and Sergey Bien

Google is a famous multinational technology company that provides various services regarding the internet. They also created various other successful subsidiary companies like Alphabet which brings out a lot of scientific inventions. Larry Page is the current C.E.O of the Alphabet. It has a chain of products like Google duo for video calling, Google maps and Waze for navigation, Google photos, great software for storage and editing of photos, and, Google docs and Google sheets that help in organizing the documents and work. The company also bought Android which was developed by Android Inc in the year 2005. Android is the operating system which is used in most of the smartphones and it includes various apps like Google play store and Gmail.

The search engine is used worldwide for accessing information. Google was founded in the year 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Bien. The idea was their project when they were studying for their Ph.D. The company also had an unofficial third founder who left before the incorporation of the company. They shared the same love and passion for computers and had a similar technical background. They both loved data mining. The main reason behind this successful partnership is the same vision for the development of the company.


Twitter- Evan Williams and Biz Stone

Twitter is a famous social networking and social blogging website. It was founded by Evan Williams and Biz Stone in 2006. It also had another co-founder Jack Dorsey, the concept of twitter was originally his idea which was later developed by Evan Williams and Biz Stone. 

It was started as a microblogging site and they did not have a clear notion of making it a social networking site in the beginning. 

The main reason for the success of this partnership is equal knowledge about the field of blogging and they had mutual respect for each other’s ideas and opinions. The founders trusted each other and their working patterns.

Intel- Gordon Moore and Bob Noyce

Intel Corporation is a multinational corporation and technology company. It was founded in the year 1968 by Gordon Moore and Bob Noyce. The founders were experts in semiconductors and had a vast knowledge in that field. 

Bob Noyce was co-inventor of the microchip and he laid the foundation and had a vision for creating a company that was very well supported by Gordon Moore. The founders also got help from Arthur Rock in order to get investors. They also had an important employee, Andy Grove who was responsible and worked for the company mostly during the 1980s. 

The founders quit Fairchild semiconductors and found Intel. They initially founded the company with the name N.M electronics, which later became Intel which is short for Integrated Electronics. The founders had the same goal and vision to replace magnetic core memory in the semiconductor market. The founders had a similar rebellious character and they had a great knowledge of technology which was the major reason for their success. 

Procter and Gamble- William Procter and James Gamble

Procter and Gamble is a famous multinational consumer goods corporation that manufactures a variety of products ranging from healthcare products to beauty products. The company was founded in 1837 by William Procter and James Gamble. 

They were brothers-in-law and they were persuaded by their father-in-law, Alexander Norris to become business partners. During 1858 they won the contract to supply products to the army during the American civil war which increased the company’s profit and also introduced a lot of new customers to their products. After some years they acquired a lot of other companies and introduced a lot of new products. 

They also built their own factories for the production of products since there was a great demand for their products. During the 1880s, their grandson William Arnett Procter even began a scheme of profit sharing for the employees in order to retain them in their companies. 

The main reason for the success of their partnership is they were entrepreneurs from the beginning and they had a family relationship and that bond made their partnership more strong. They shared similar values and had the same notions regarding business.

Yahoo!- Jerry Yang and David Filo

Yahoo! is a famous multinational company that provides various services related to the web. The company was founded by Jerry Yang and David Filo in the year 1994. The company was incorporated in the year 1995. Jerry Yang and David Filo were students of the Stanford University where they completed electrical engineering. 

They created a website called ”Jerry and David’s guide to World Wide Web”, which they renamed Yahoo! In the year 1994. According to, they bunked classes to surf websites which they later organized into a list and their list morphed into Yahoo!. 

The word “yahoo” is an acronym for “Yet Another Hierarchically Organized Oracle”. The founders said they selected the name for the slang definition that is mostly used by college students, where “yahoo” means unsophisticated and rude. Their shared passion for websites was the main reason for the success of this partnership.


There are a lot of famous establishments that were successful and had co-founders who were very helpful in the setting up and development of the company. There are certain stories where the idea for creating the company would be the idea of co-founder which would later be developed by another partner. The process of selecting a co-founder for a new startup or company is a tedious process and it must be done carefully. The co-founders must have the same idea about the business which will avoid conflicts in the future. Thus co-founders are very useful for any startup or company.

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