At the highest level, the balance sheet is the spreadsheet activity used to keep track of who owns what proportion of the business. Planning for the cap table allows you to know who owns what percentage of a company, helping you to understand how you should vote for certain decisions that will result in the success of a company. Cap table planning can help founders and investors, as it shows them how the ownership in a company is distributed. For instance, cap table planning can help founders and employees to understand how much ownership they hold in a company, which is important because this will determine how much capital they receive when the company is sold or goes public. Updating is important because you can use cap table planning to show prospective investors how much equity is available to buy. A valuation before funding is also giving the new investors a guideline of what percentage of equity ownership they would get if they invested X amount of dollars in the business. Once a company has received investment from investors, managing shareholders also becomes a major challenge, something that can be done on the cap sheet. As an itemized document that records all the information regarding shareholders and equity held by a company, a well-managed cap table will be important for the companys long-term success. The use of the companys cap sheet comes in play when the total number of shares, value of shares, and equity ownership by all shareholders needs to be tracked. A cap table shows you how much of a company each individual has, which can let you know whether or not he or she has enough shares to be making decisions. You can think of its cap as a companys total outstanding shares multiplied by its stock price. A companys stock price may even swing around enough to put it in a higher-cap category or lower-cap category. Because exercising the warrants on the companys shares is usually done at lower than the companys sharemarket price, this could potentially affect a companys market capitalization. Significant changes in stock values - up or down - can affect the market cap of the company, as can changes in how many shares are issued. Although the number of shares outstanding and stock price changes, the companys market capitalization remains unchanged. Market capitalization is based on the total value of all shares in the company. While market cap measures a companys stock, enterprise value measures a companys total business value, including its debt, assets, and cash. To calculate a companys enterprise value, one adds the market cap to the value of a companys outstanding preferred stock, if it exists, to any minority interests in the company, if it exists. The market cap represents how much you would pay to purchase all shares in a publicly traded company, and is not necessarily the actual value. The market cap measures how much the company is worth in the open market, and also reflects how the market views its future prospects, as it reflects what investors are willing to pay for its shares. Market capitalization allows investors to gauge the value of a company by the perceived value the public places on it. You may want to use enterprise value rather than market capitalization in general metrics used for company valuation. From an investors point of view, a cap table gives them a benchmark of a firms existing cap structure, and allows them to see where they would fit into it. If you incorporated as a company, the accountants will use your cap table to figure out ownership splits, stock deals, and forms of capital so that they can adjust the owners equity portion of your balance sheet accordingly. The benefits to knowing the stockholders and cap tables for your business may differ between startups and established companies. Companies stand to gain tremendously from increased speed in transactions and accelerated due diligence resulting from properly managed cap tables. To overcome this headache of adding more sheets, use a cap table software that can do it all for you, no matter how large your company is. While you ideally want to engage an attorney right from day one, the cap table administration role depends on the size of your company. While you might not be using the cap sheet daily or weekly, if you are starting or running a company, your cap sheet is going to be one of your most reliable lighthouses when it comes to making decisions that are in your investors best interests, and also in your best interests as the founder. If you are intrigued by the Cap & Grow strategy, you might be thinking a cheap, simple-to-implement solution that opens up new market opportunities sounds too good to be true -- but cheap is not. Many companies are adopting the cap and grow strategy because they are realizing the huge value of having two solutions, including offering a bolstered solution with multiple features, higher ROI within only 1 or 2 months, and increased enterprise security. The CAPS designation helps you to guide customers in making good choices, while also giving you added security when it comes to changing niches of your marketplace which are continuing to gain in popularity. Current investors can verify who has control, and they can use data to identify their positions and potential gains, using a CAPS spreadsheet. A Cap table is where you will want to keep track of how many shares have vested over time, and adjust for when a worker options holder leaves the company, as well as limit shares, transfers, and buybacks.