I'm a sole founder of a rather ambitious company which I have worked tirelessly to build. The company will require some heavy lifting from well connected political persons to help the company to expand in the future. I have indeed found a extremely well connected individual that will help open doors and make introductions, however the individual has asked for a 10% equity stake in the company in exchange for a "super advisory role".
The individual in question was a top ranking government official and was introduced to me by a valued friend. He has impeccable contacts throughout all layers of government, was previously the CEO of a multibillion dollar energy company and sits on a range of domain related boards.
The individual has promised to lobby hard on behalf of the company and play a mentoring/advisory role. He has already been quite gracious with his time to date, while facilitating some valuable introductions and meetings as a gesture of goodwill for which I am immensely grateful.
My greatest issue is that the risk for the individual is minimal if the company fails, however, the upside is potentially significant. The dilemma is keeping this individual incentivized to grow the company and to continue to add a significant value over time, while protecting my position if things don't work out.