Would I invest in a technology business that didn’t have a CTO or a technical co-founder?
As a fractional CTO, you would expect me to say that I would not invest, and firmly say to founders that they need a technical person in the business in order to get investment.
Realistically, this isn’t the case. However, you do need two things – a) you need a good enough foundation right now, and b) you need a plan to create technical leadership within the business.
Without technical skills in house, to build that v1 product that you’re using to prove product-market fit and traction, you need to outsource that work to an agency. You will be asking that agency to fill the “technical leadership” gap within your business. Technical leadership is the “fuel” that is used to create actual working outputs.
That technical leadership can be external at the point of investment, but it can’t stay that way. There has to be a defined path to bring that technical leadership in-house and wean yourself off of the using the agency, in part or fully.