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Doing Business With a Romantic Partner: It’s Complicated

Doing Business With a Romantic Partner: It???s Complicated
Photograph by Izabela Habur

When Nicoletta Donadio started her first company in college, she worried people would think she was just tagging along with her boyfriend and co-founder, Claudio Carnino.

“People we were doing business with, and our families as well, always thought I was the weak link,” Donadio says. “The fact that I am his girlfriend made them think he was kind of protecting me. Sometimes I felt I was just an employee.” Three companies later, she sometimes still struggles to define her leadership role at Fanchimp, the couple’s London-based social media marketing startup.