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The ethics of getting started

Thursday 21 September, 2023

jar of coins with a plant growing out the top

You work in FinTech and have secured seed funding commitments for a new busines venture.

The seed funding has a major contributor, who after making their contribition, has been publicly outed as having been involved in unethical practices at their financial services organisation.

There are potential legal consequences for this person, and your customers and staff are worried about reputation and long term consequences and are insisting the funds are returned, but this creates a risk for your business.

What do you do?

Please share your ethical dilemmas with us - we can post them anonymously. You can email your dilemmas to

Photo by Towfiqu Barbhuiya on Unsplash



There are 2 comments for The ethics of getting started.

Re: The ethics of getting started

Monday 25 September, 2023
by Janet
I think this is a no brainer. Take the money and make your business thrive. Know that in your own actions going forward you need to be ethical and stick to that. If we made decisions every time someone opposed someone or something we will constantly be puppets on a string. It is unfortunate the person has proven to be a bad person but if you were completely unaware of it when you took the money - take it.

Re: The ethics of getting started

Tuesday 24 October, 2023
by GS
Return the funds they're 'proceeds of crime'.
A few things ethically from me: (1) the funds original source/s are likely to be innocent therefore, in my opinion, have right to recover their funds; (2) I wouldn't want my company to be started using proceeds of crime; and (3) if funds were used, I'd be perpetually concerned there may be recovery proceeding and I'd lose the company.
Please note: non-lawyer perspective I don't know if any of the above could happen, but I'd certainly return the funds.

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The Oath

  • Trust is the foundation of my profession.
  • I will serve all interests in good faith.
  • I will compete with honour.
  • I will pursue my ends with ethical restraint.
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  • In these and all other matters;
    My word is my bond.