Equity is a key tool for start-ups. Often lacking in resources when compared to larger, more established firms, every aspect of a growing business must be used as a tool to further the goals of the firm. ‘Our resources are limited and equity is a strong weapon for us. We don’t have angel investors or venture capital, so we worked with our corporate investor and agreed that it is okay for us to use equity as compensation,’ said C.J. Okumura, co-founder of Abwiz, a local San Diego-based biotech start-up.