How To Start A Business With Your Friend, According To The Founders Of theSkimm

Wouldn’t you love to start a business with your best friend? Sounds like a dream come true, doesn’t it? Your business professor would disagree.

They will tell you that forming a business with your best friend is the worst idea because you might end up hating each other.

While that can happen, they don’t mention that you can also form a million dollar business with each other.  

Not to mention friendships come with health benefits but, that’s another story.

In 2012, theSkimm launched. It is an email newsletter that provides people information on popular news headlines.

Headlines include the most controversial conversations in sports to what the Kardashians are wearing. Thanks to founders Danielle Weisberg and Carly Zakin, it is easier and much more fun to be aware of what is going on in the world.

In addition to making a helpful and informative platform, the founders are also best friends!

Danielle Weisberg and Carly Zakin’s friendship blossomed in Rome while studying abroad. In Rome Weisberg and Zakin realized they had a lot in common. Both of these women loved reading the news when they were younger, they interned for the same employers, and both were considered sources of information to their friends.

Dannielle and Carly explained the news to their colleagues and friends in a way they wanted to hear it.

In an interview with Into the Gloss, Danielle claims the whole idea to make a business together started out as a joke.

 “We would just kind of joke always, like, ‘One day, we’ll start something.’ We never said what that was. We never said what void it was filling…it was a joke.”

Sigmund Freud once said,

“There is a grain of truth in every joke,” or that “a joke is truth wrapped in a smile.”

In this case, that was true. The friends knew they wanted to start something but needed that extra push to get them started. They provided that push for each other.

You don’t need to be twins to speak to each other telepathically. Best friends can do it too. In the same interview with Into the Gloss, Carly says:

“We saw each other every day and it was a physical reminder of, like, what are you going to do? Make your own path. So it was just like, OK, let’s try it. And then, we started articulating what the idea was, and we both just kind of instinctively knew what it was.”

It’s weird to think that professors discourage business partnerships amongst friends and family when we hear the story of Danielle Weisberg and Carly Zakin. These two are perfect examples of a successful business partnership who are best friends.

They found out what they had in common and motivated each other to do something with it. There are not many who will support you or your new idea, but you can always count on your friends to have your back.

theSkimm has more than 1.5 million subscribers and is still growing. Professors and entrepreneurs should not be so quick to discourage business partnerships with friends. They should explain the consequences but never deny it when it comes to measuring its success.

Danielle and Carly are still running theSkimm but most importantly, they are pushing people of all ages to go after their dreams. So, remember that amazing idea you had with your best friend? Go pursue it now! Carly stated,

“I’ll never say to someone else, you’re young, don’t worry. If you want to work, then good for you. Do it.”

Profile photo of Theresa Maloco
Theresa Maloco

Theresa is a beloved Empress OG who never thought she’d be a writer. After realizing her potential, she quit her retail job to be part of several start-up projects. Join her on this journey to success.