I've been running an in-office and online educational business for 3 years. The original partners are offering me a small equity share, but there is no contract yet (nor has there ever been one). I have a lot of actionable online business ideas that I'm ready to pull the trigger on and I'm trying to decided if I should quit my current job running their company and start my own personal technology startup or try to do both at the same time.
Since I am being offered such a small equity share in the company I run, I don't want to launch my ideas through this company. I want to launch the ideas through my person technology startup and if the company I run wants to use some of my ideas or software from my technology startup then they may license the ideas from me or I'll work out an equity share with them.
Since there are no contracts yet there doesn't seem to be any fiduciary obligations or intellectual property issues that I can see. However, some of the ideas I may come up with in my technology startup could compete indirectly with the company I run (not necessarily though). So it's a little hairy. I take more of a sales, marketing, and management role at the company I run. The original partners are not very tech savvy and their vision of the current business is stubbornly narrow. So, if I launch my ideas through their company then the partners won't fully understand the ideas and they won't support the ideas the way I need. However, they will own a majority stake in the ideas when they are bringing very little of value to the table (also, finding outside investors is not a problem here). Quitting seems like the easy choice here, but I really want to finish what I started with automating the business I run; which will take another 1-2 years, so clearly I'm trying to have my cake and eat it too!
What do you think?
Any advice on pulling this off? More specifically, do you have any ideas on how I can structure this type of relationship?