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The Top Entrepreneurs in Money, Marketing, Business and Life

Listen to The Top if you want to hear from the worlds TOP entrepreneurs on how much they sold last month, how they are selling it, and what they are selling - 7 days a week in 20 minute interviews! The Top is FOR YOU IF you are: A STUDENT who wants to become the CEO of a $10m company in under 24 months (episode #4) STUCK in the CORPORATE grind and looking to create a $10k/mo side business so you can quit (episode #7) An influencer or BLOGGER who wants to make $27k/mo in monthly RECURRING revenue to have the life you want and full CONTROL (episode #1) The Software as a Service (SaaS) entrepreneur who wants to grow to a $100m+ valuation (episode #14). Your host, Nathan Latka is a 25 year old software entrepreneur who has driven over $4.5 million in revenue and built a 25 person team as he dropped out of school, raised $2.5million from a Forbes Billionaire, and attracted over 10,000 paying customers from 160+ different countries. Oprah gets 60 minutes or more to make her guests comfortable to then ask tough questions. Nathan does it all in less than 15 minutes in this daily podcast that's like an audio version of Pat Flynn's monthly income report. Join the Top Tribe at NathanLatka.com/TheTop
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Now displaying: June, 2017
Jun 30, 2017

Vinay Patankar. He’s the CEO of Process Street, the simplest way to manage your teams’ recurring processes and workflows. Vinay sets up new clients, onboard employees and manages content publishing with his tool. He also co-host the podcast Business Systems Explored where he deep dives into business systems with industry experts.

Famous Five:

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:50 – Nathan introduces Vinay to the show
  • 01:28 – Process Street is a tool that helps companies build and manage their workflows and processes
  • 01:34 – Process Street is a SaaS product, charging on a monthly or yearly subscription based on the number of users one has
  • 01:44 – The vision is to make workflows easy
  • 02:28 – Process Street is from an intuitive perspective
  • 02:53 – Average customer pay
  • 03:42 – Process Street has options for pricing and incentives for annual contracts
  • 04:04 – Process Street was launched in 2013 as a side project
  • 04:10 – Seed round was raised a year and a half ago
  • 04:20 – Team size is 21
  • 04:30 – Total raised was $1.3M
  • 04:47 – Process Street went through Angel Cloud
  • 05:10 – Nathan thinks that the one who will win the space is the one who is better at distribution
  • 05:42 – Distribution is the key in finding a scalable sales process and getting the pricing right
  • 05:57 – The space is very fragmented
  • 06:34 – Vinay thinks they don’t need to beat the competition, they just need to grab enough volume of shares
  • 06:52 – Process Street focuses on SEO
    • 07:04 – They measure their rank from targeted keywords
  • 07:28 – Process Street has a marketing team that helps with distribution
    • 08:13 – SEO is cost-effective
  • 08:35 – CAC from the SEO efforts
  • 09:06 – MRPU
  • 09:17 – Process Street doesn’t spend in other marketing channels
  • 09:26 – Process Street invests in sales deeper into their funnels
  • 10:00 – Expansion rate varies depending on the size of the customer
  • 10:28 – Process Street has a healthy expansion revenue
  • 11:26 – 15 of the team are focused on marketing
  • 11:35 – Process Street is still working on their headcount expenses
  • 11:56 – Process Street will adjust and optimize pricing
  • 12:29 – Average number of customers
  • 12:41 – MRR
  • 13:03 – Process Street’s goal is to raise an A round at the first or second quarter of 2018
  • 13:20 – Target MRR by the end of 2017
  • 13:35 – Process Street has no paid acquisition
  • 14:50 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. The one that will scale in the project management space is the one that is better at distribution.
  2. You don’t always need to beat your competitors, just gain your shares and increase your volume.
  3. There is real money that can be made on the internet.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

Jun 29, 2017

Scott Clark. He’s the co-founder and CEO of SigOpt, a Y-Combinator and Andreessen Horowitz backed, optimization as a service startup. Scott has been applying after-learning technologies in industry and academia for years. He holds a PhD for applied mathematics and an MS in computer science from Cornell University and a BS degree in mathematics, physics and computational physics from Oregon State University. He was chosen as one of Forbes' 30 under 30 in 2016.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Hard Thing About Hard Things
  • What CEO do you follow? – Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz and Phil Knight 
  • Favorite online tool? — Gmail and Slack
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 8
  • If you could let your 20-year old self know one thing, what would it be? – Scott would tell himself that it doesn’t get easier, so set up habits and processes to make things sustainable when you have the time and ability to do it because that will definitely help once things ramp up

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Scott to the show
  • 01:25 – SigOpt is optimization as a service
  • 01:27 – SigOpt helps companies build different, complex AI and machine learning pipelines
  • 01:41 – SigOpt is a SaaS model and the subscription is based on the number of models per month
  • 01:53 – Pricing starts at $2500 a month and enterprise starts at $10K a month
  • 02:13 – Average monthly RPU
  • 02:33 – SigOpt usually engages at the executive level
  • 02:38 – People wanted to use AI for their businesses but couldn’t find the right person to do the work so they go with SigOpt
  • 03:23 – One of SigOpt’s client is Prudential
    • 03:31 – Insurance companies are augmenting their traditional methods to the new data that is being collected
    • 03:48 – As their data increases, the need for the best possible performance increases
  • 04:26 – What SigOpt does is different from the traditional machine learning as a service companies
  • 04:41 – Scott shares a specific example of how SigOpt works with credit card companies
    • 04:44 – Fraud detection has been around for decades
    • 05:28 – SigOpt fine tunes different knobs and levers in the configuration parameters that makes the machine model work
  • 06:15 – SigOpt focuses on black box optimization
  • 07:45 – SigOpt relies on the domain expertise of the person at the specific firm to build a deep learning model
  • 08:31 – SigOpt applies an ensemble of global optimization techniques to the problem so they can efficiently configure the system
  • 09:20 – SigOpt suggests different curvatures
  • 09:58 – SigOpt has raised $8.8M to date
  • 10:30 – SigOpt never sees the underlying data
  • 11:11 – The entire system is designed to be hands-off
  • 11:43 – SigOpt was launched end of 2013
  • 11:51 – Number of paying customers is around a dozen
  • 12:18 – Average MRR
  • 12:25 – SigOpt prefer annual deals
  • 12:54 – No churn yet
  • 13:14 – Team size is 13
  • 13:35 – The capital raised was spent on the team and the enterprise sales efforts
  • 13:54 – 3-4 of the team are in sales
  • 14:05 – CAC
  • 14:22 – They sometimes visit their customers
  • 14:55 – Investors like to make big bets on the new technologies
  • 15:33 – The goal for the series A money
  • 16:33 – Average expenses
  • 17:40 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • The need for AI and machine-learning is growing fast and there’s not enough people who are qualified to develop these products.
  • The headcount can eat up most of a company’s expenses—especially in the technology industry.
  • Optimization services make a business more efficient leading to a less to none churn rate.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 28, 2017

Eric Dolan. He’s the co-founder and CEO of Neutun. He has 5 years of startup experience and business management experience. He also has data science experience with a focus on product development and management. In 2014, his team received an award for Best Smartwatch App in the Hack the North Competition in Canada. Recently, Eric was named INC’s 30 under 30, a list that recognizes the best young CEOs in America. He received his bachelor in business administration from University of Western Ontario and his post graduate specialization certificate from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, New York University School of Business and John Hopkins University.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Hard Thing About Hard Things
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Jeff Bezos
  • Favorite online tool? — Mixmax
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 6-8
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Go more towards your business and tech side, that’s where you’re going to make more money”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:50 – Nathan introduces Eric to the show
  • 01:42 – Eric is a Canadian and has been in US for 1.5 years
  • 02:11 – Eric is currently in Canada during the interview
  • 02:35 – Neutun is a software that makes it easier for patients to keep track of chronic diseases
  • 02:44 – Eric’s mom has epilepsy and it was difficult for them to manage the seizures and medications
  • 03:06 – Neutun keeps track of the seizures and manages the medications on time
  • 03:28 – Neutun is device-agnostic
    • 03:37 – It allows users to use their existing smartphone to track
  • 03:45 – Neutun makes money through lead generation
  • 04:17 – Eric is looking at a million dollar runway for 2017
  • 05:09 – Neutun’s revenue is predictable for a SaaS business
  • 05:56 – Neutun’s initial model was a lead generator for pharmaceutical companies
  • 06:02 – In the long term, Eric wanted Neutun to transition to a market-intelligence company
  • 06:14 – Neutun wanted to address all chronic diseases
  • 06:30 – Neutun has 10K organic users
  • 07:15 – Neutun was launched late 2016
  • 07:47 – People find Neutun mainly from word-of-mouth
  • 08:18 – There are also doctors who are recommending Neutun
  • 08:38 – Neutun makes money through scripts or prescriptions
  • 09:08 – Average amount per script
  • 10:23 – Neutun tries to benefit the user as much as possible
  • 10:46 – Neutun also suggests sponsored medication
  • 11:06 – Average medication expenses of a patient
  • 11:42 – Neutun is almost similar with tracking steps
  • 11:53 – Through Neutun’s algorithms and AI, it can detect a seizure
    • 12:11 – Then the recording will start
    • 12:44 – Tracking the seizure is important for doctors
  • 12:58 – With Neutun’s data, doctors can prescribe more accurate medications
  • 14:10 – The only way to prevent seizures is to do what doctors tell you to do and take the medications
  • 14:37 – Neutun was initially bootstrapped
  • 14:56 – Neutun has raised a million on a kiss convertible note
  • 15:33 – Team size is 7
  • 16:50 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • If patients can track their seizures accurately, doctors can prescribe a more appropriate prescription.
  • The advancement in technology is benefitting the health industry in many ways.
  • Go where you can earn well.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 27, 2017

Paul Tyma. He’s the founder and creator of a tool called Mailinator which is an email system. He’s also a startup veteran and has focused on 4 Silicon Valley startups including Preemptive Solutions, Manybrain Inc which owns Mailinator, Home-Account.com which was acquired by Bills.com, and Refresh Inc which was acquired by LinkedIn. He’s a frequent speaker, writer and author of one of the original books on Java called Java Primer Plus. Dr. Tyma has received his PhD from Syracuse University focused on Java/.Net performance.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Influence
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Amy Errett and Bradley Kam
  • Favorite online tool? — Linode
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 8.5
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “How to talk to girls”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:53 – Nathan introduces Paul to the show
  • 01:48 – Paul started his first company during his PhD
  • 01:56 – After getting his PhD, Paul worked for Google
  • 02:12 – Paul is still part of the board for Preemptive Solutions
  • 02:18 – Refresh had a very visible exit and is currently at LinkedIn icebreakers
    • 02:37 – The acquisition was in 2015
    • 02:45 – Acquisition price
    • 02:54 – Refresh was a consumer application
    • 03:10 – Refresh has raised $10M in total
    • 03:20 – The first round was a priced round
    • 03:53 – Refresh had 100K users
    • 04:30 – Refresh built its own identity from scratch
    • 04:40 – The technology of Refresh
  • 05:40 – Home-Account.com was built prior to Refresh
    • 05:59 – Paul was a minor founder
    • 06:15 – Option pool
  • 07:23 – Selling a company and staying with the company who acquired it is a cliché in Silicon Valley
  • 08:19 – Mailinator was a side project Paul built 13 years ago
    • 08:30 – It was a receive only mail service
    • 08:50 – Mailinator lets you create a disposable email
  • 10:17 – Mailinator had some ads which paid for the server
  • 11:30 – Mailinator now makes money from affiliates
  • 11:47 – Mailinator’s brand became strong
  • 11:56 – There was a high usage from QA departments who tested their signups process and welcome email
    • 12:11 – They asked Mailinator for additional features
    • 12:40 – Hundreds of QA teams now are using and paying Mailinator
    • 13:16 – Mailinator also has a private paid domain
  • 13:40 – Pricing is $29 for single user and $129 for a team
  • 13:56 – Average RPU is $35
  • 14:31 – Average MRR
  • 14:57 – Paul is now turning Mailinator into a business
  • 15:21 – Churn is pretty high
  • 15:48 – Less paid advertising
  • 16:16 – Mailinator has 45K unique users a day
  • 16:44 – 25K new inboxes are set up everyday
  • 16:58 – “This is not a DAU product”
  • 17:21 – Mailinator has not raised money
  • 18:09 – Team size is 3
  • 18:30 – Gross margin
    • 18:59 – Server cost
  • 19:53 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • A side project can definitely turn into something more—don’t underestimate its potential.
  • An email does NOT reflect one’s identity.
  • There are thousands of emails being made and sent every day—having a disposable one is almost a necessity.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 26, 2017

Kathryn Minshew. She’s the CEO of founder of TheMuse.com, a career platform that is used by over 50M folks to find jobs, learn professional skills or advance in their careers. This platform is also used by hundreds of companies looking to grow their employer brand and to hire. Kathryn is a Harvard and Wall Street Journal contributor and she’s spoken at MIT in Harvard along with the Today’s Show. She’s been named The Smart CEO’s Future 50, INC’s 35 under 35 and a Duke alum. Kathryn worked at Rwanda and Health Access Initiative and before founding The Muse, she was previously at McKinsey.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Hard Thing About Hard Things and Traction
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Jennifer Hyman, Elon Musk and Jeremy Johnson
  • Favorite online tool? — Boomerang and Pocket
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 7
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – Kathryn wished she knew it was okay to be different and everything that is worth doing is hard

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:42 – Nathan introduces Kathryn to the show
  • 01:35 – The Muse was founded to be the most trusted and beloved place for people to navigate their career
  • 01:42 – The Muse is a marketplace with over 50M people who uses the site annually
  • 02:00 – The Muse has over 600 companies which they help in hiring and employment
  • 02:25 – “If you want really great people, you have to compete for them”
  • 03:00 – The companies can reach more candidates through The Muse
  • 03:19 – The Muse is a SaaS-enabled marketplace
  • 03:31 – The Muse somehow competes with LinkedIn Recruit and Glassdoor
  • 04:05 – Most companies in The Muse sign up for an annual subscription
  • 04:24 – Average pricing is $20-30K but enterprise is higher than the mid-market businesses
  • 04:54 – The Muse works with every business size in every industry
    • 05:04 – The businesses are categorized by team size
  • 05:25 – Companies that are subscribed have access to different tools on the website
  • 06:11 – The marketplace on TheMuse.com is where companies can post their profiles and job listings
  • 06:21 The Muse has also developed more products
  • 06:41 – One of The Muse’s client has 50K to 150K employees
  • 07:29 The Muse also assists their Fortune 100 companies on their existing channels
  • 08:12 The Muse started targeting individual users
  • 08:24 The Muse was launched in 2011 having career related tools and content for individuals
  • 08:31 The Muse rolled out their first company profile after hitting 100K website visits per month
  • 08:41 – The Muse have never had advertising on the website
  • 08:58 The Muse had their first 100K users in 6 months
  • 09:05 – The initial cash for The Muse came from Kathryn’s savings
    • 09:39 – When Kathryn left McKinsey, she had $25K in savings
    • 09:50 – Then Kathryn got an offer to work at Rwanda
    • 10:28 – Kathryn was 25 at the time
  • 10:56 – Kathryn has always thought that savings equate to freedom
  • 11:34 – When Kathryn came back from Rwanda, she started a business similar to The Muse
    • 13:02 – Kathryn spent $20K on her first company
    • 13:23 – With only $5K left in savings, Kathryn together with her co-founder started The Muse
    • 13:45 – Kathryn tried to keep her expenses low
  • 14:24 – Kathryn started The Muse because she had all the questions and wanted answers
  • 14:29 – The community then gave Kathryn the answers
  • 15:02 – The Muse initially had 50 articles giving career advice and providing resources
  • 15:10 – The first job listing was posted after a month as a test
  • 15:29 – The Muse used to get paid for the job listing but it doesn’t work that way now
  • 16:17 – Kathryn shares how the conversation happened between her and the co-founders
    • 17:11 – They wanted to work and make it happen
    • 17:25 – The equity between them is almost even
  • 17:54 – The Muse raised a round for $100K in 2012 and got into Y-combinator
  • 18:41 The Muse raised $10M in a series A in 2015, and $16M in a Series B: Q1 of 2017
  • 19:12 The Muse is closed to breaking even
  • 19:31 – There are different ways in building a business and there’s no one perfect path
  • 19:53 The Muse has 600 active businesses
    • 20:10 – Some companies just closed or got acquired
  • 21:35 – Average revenue
  • 23:05 – The Famous Five
  • 23:32 – Kathryn’s book The New Rules of Work

 

3 Key Points:

  • You can start a business with minimal means and still grow it into a profitable one.
  • There is no one perfect path to building a business.
  • If a task or venture is hard, that’s a good sign it’s worth it.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 25, 2017

Duy Huynh. He’s the founder of Autonomous.ai which builds smart office products to help people work smarter.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Zero to One
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Stewart Butterfield
  • Favorite online tool? — Google Analytics
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 4
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Focus on and build something really helpful to people”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:50 – Nathan introduces Duy to the show
  • 01:20 – Subscribe to Youtube to see Duy using a smart desk
  • 01:32 – Smart desk helps work smart the whole day
  • 01:48 – “We don’t care much about the money”
  • 02:02 – Autonomous’ mission is how they can help companies’ work smarter
  • 02:51 – Autonomous wants to reinvent every single item in an office
  • 03:15 – One of Autonomous’ products is the Cardboard
    • 03:30 – It is created for people who want an affordable standing desk
    • 04:05 – It sells for $19
    • 04:17 – Cardboard is a fairly new product
  • 04:42 – Autonomous was founded in 2014
  • 05:10 – Autonomous has shipped around 100K units
  • 05:16 – The best-seller is the SmartDesk
    • 05:38 – It can keep you healthy and stay active in office
  • 05:50 – Some of Nathan’s friends have bought the Smartdesk
  • 06:07 – Autonomous has raised $200K
  • 06:18 – Prior to Autonomous, Duy really liked smart products
  • 06:46 – Duy started Autonomous with his co-founders in a small apartment
  • 08:25 – The seed money has helped Duy make the prototypes
  • 09:00 – Duy has spent $100-200K on the products before raising the seed round
  • 09:09 – Duy traveled to find the best suppliers
  • 09:30 – Team size
    • 09:43 – 4 are working in the NY office
    • 09:46 – 10 in California and some in Vietnam and China
    • 10:10 – Total of 40 people
  • 10:22 – Autonomous is currently cash flow positive
  • 10:35 – Duy isn’t looking at raising another round at the moment
  • 11:00 – Monthly expenses
  • 11:40 – Autonomous is doing over $10M annually
  • 12:18 – Most of the customers are founders
  • 12:37 – Autonomous currently relies on word-of mouth
  • 12:49 – Autonomous had a Kickstarter campaign
  • 13:05 – Autonomous made $250K from their Kickstarter campaign
    • 13:20 – It was for a thousand units
  • 13:58 – Duy wanted to maintain a fair margin in the supply chain
  • 14:36 – “They pay for what they get”
  • 15:00 – Competitors’ margin
  • 15:19 – Gross profit
  • 16:04 – The second and third best-selling products are the chair and stool, respectively
  • 16:38 – Duy wouldn’t take a deal from Herman Miller at the moment
  • 16:41 – Autonomous isn’t a furniture company
  • 17:19 – On paper, Duy is the single founder but the co-founders have equity as well
  • 18:50 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • Smart products shouldn’t just offer convenience, but make your life healthy and active too.
  • Price your product fairly—the value of the product should match the price.
  • Create something that will be really helpful for people.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 24, 2017

Connor Gillivan. He’s a 27-year old serial entrepreneur and published author. He started his first company out of his college dorm room and built it to sell over $20M in products on Amazon.com. After he became an expert on hiring online, he co-founded FreeeUp, an online hiring marketplace focused on connecting the top 1% freelancers with business owners. He’s the author of Free Up Your Business: 50 Secrets to Bootstrap Million Dollar Companies.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Shoe Dog
  • What CEO do you follow? – Elon Musk
  • Favorite online tool? — Jira
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 5-6
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “I wished I knew to stay focused on what I do best”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:47 – Nathan introduces Connor to the show
  • 01:32 – Connor makes 20% to 30% of the gross margin of a product on Amazon
    • 01:38 – Net profits end up being from 5%-15%
  • 02:04 – It was 6 years ago when Connor started his business
  • 02:15 – Connor earned on the first year of the business
  • 02:51 – Connor has scaled up his first company
  • 03:00 – The company still operates with $1-2M in revenue per year
  • 03:08 – The team is composed of freelancers who are based around the world
  • 03:27 – The 3 founders, including Connor, are getting their pay quarterly
  • 03:40 – Connor now spends his time on his second business FreeeUp
  • 03:52 – Connor’s first company is Portlight
    • 04:05 – Average price point was  $75-100
  • 04:25 – FreeeUp was launched in 2015
  • 04:29 – Connor and his co-founder learned about hiring freelancers through Odesk and Elance, which merged and is now called Upwork
  • 04:36 – They didn’t like the process of posting job ads and going through every applicant
  • 04:46 – FreeeUp has a better solution where the business owner doesn’t have to do the upfront work
  • 04:58 – FreeeUp finds the top 1%  candidates for the business owners
  • 05:18 – Toptal is more focused on top developers and designers
  • 05:23 – FreeeUp’s freelancers are specialized on e-commerce business operations
    • 05:35 – There’s no upfront free
  • 05:43 – FreeeUp has a standard markup that they charge on their clients for hourly rates
  • 06:06 – The minimum charge is $2 and 20% for the higher price
  • 06:55 – There are over 500 freelancers on FreeeUp
  • 07:28 – FreeeUp’s system can measure the amount they’re paying their freelancers
  • 07:37 – The biggest metric is the hours billed to the client
  • 08:01 – Average billing per hour is $10
  • 08:18 – FreeeUp is keeping $60K-80K in revenue per month
  • 09:11 – FreeeUp has around 1500 signups on the platform
  • 09:16 – FreeeUp bills between 300-500 people who are utilizing their workers
  • 09:45 – 2000-2500 people have been billed since FreeeUp started
  • 09:58 – FreeeUp has a referral program where clients can refer other people who would want to use FreeeUp and they receive $0.50 for every hour that has been billed
  • 10:28 – FreeeUp is more hands on with their client
  • 10:56 – Most clients start slow and when they see FreeeUp’s benefits, they’ll use it more
  • 11:10 – Team size is 20-25 part-time people
  • 11:51 – Connor is currently in Orlando, FL
  • 12:11 – Both of Connor’s businesses are bootstrapped
  • 12:21 – Total transaction volume for 2016 is a bit over a million
  • 12:33 – 2016 average revenue
  • 12:44 – 2017 projected transaction volume is $3-4M
  • 13:20 – Connor puts his money back into his businesses to scale them
  • 13:47 – Connor splits the 20% from FreeeUp
  • 14:32 – Since April, FreeeUp has grown 1000%
  • 15:20 – FreeeUp started winning in the ecommerce industry
  • 15:58 – FreeeUp now offers digital marketing as well and try to find different areas that will interest more clients
  • 17:10 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • There are more business owners relying on outsourcing for their needs and share with others just how beneficial outsourcing is.
  • Ensure you have backup funds for your company.
  • Focus on what you do best.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 23, 2017

Dan Gamito. He now leads partnerships and B&D for a company called ManyChat. Formerly, he led the customer success team for ConvertKit.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – N/A
  • What CEO do you follow? – Des Traynor
  • Favorite online tool? — Calendly
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 7
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Just chill out”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:47 – Nathan introduces Dan to the show
  • 01:16 – ManyChat is marketing automation platform for Facebook Messenger
  • 01:28 – ManyChat is a SaaS business
  • 01:38 – Nathan uses ManyChat and struggles with the emotional factor
  • 02:11 – Users struggle with emotion because of the automation side of ManyChat
  • 02:14 – Think about how people use messenger
  • 02:29 – Dan suggests in keeping your messages informal, straight to the point and write what people would find valuable in EVERY sentence
  • 02:49 – People are now shifting to Messenger from email marketing
  • 02:57 – Messenger is different from email
  • 03:05 – Nathan shares how he struggles figuring out what messages to set
  • 03:54 – How can people use ManyChat in a simple way?
    • 04:04 – Dan challenges us to look at our phones and see who we want to talk to at that moment
    • 04:17 – Build the interactions up from the bottom
    • 04:19 – The goal is to make people want to have a live chat conversation with you
  • 04:51 – ManyChat can be part of your funnel
  • 05:49 – ManyChat has a partnership with Sean of Soul Space Media
    • 06:04 – Sean’s wife had a case study of ManyChat on their podcast
    • 06:10 – DigitalMarketer did a case study, as well
  • 07:05 – For 0-500 subscribers, pricing is $10
  • 07:18 – Average customer pay
  • 07:51 – ManyChat has been around for about a year and a half
  • 08:38 – ManyChat has raised a seed round from 500 Startups
  • 09:02 – ManyChat has raised around a million
  • 09:19 – ManyChat has over 40K bots
  • 10:26 – Dan on leaving ConvertKit
    • 10:33 – Dan was Nathan’s first hire at ConvertKit
    • 10:45 – Dan did everything to add value to the company, more specifically in customer success
    • 10:56 – Dan has launched his own software product prior to ConvertKit
    • 11:27 – Dan saw Nathan trying to compete with Infusionsoft
    • 11:41 – Dan was like a silent co-founder
    • 12:12 – Dan ended up not being a good fit for ConvertKit
    • 12:54 – Both Dan and Nathan are both headstrong and their communication broke down
    • 13:16 – Nathan terminated Dan on short notice
    • 13:50 – Dan was naïve and inexperienced during that time
    • 14:19 – “I walked in completely unprepared”
    • 15:01 – Nathan gave an offer to Dan
    • 15:30 – Nathan explains how equity works in startups
    • 16:16 – Dan thought he didn’t value himself very much
    • 19:10 – Dan is now almost 30
  • 19:31 – Dan was pursued by ManyChat’s CEO Mike
    • 19:55 – “He believed in me”
    • 20:13 – Dan approached ManyChat with what he could add to it and the structure that he could build 
    • 20:21 – Dan knew he could do it by heart
  • 20:36 – Team size is over 15
  • 20:49 – Dan still has no equity
  • 21:03 – Dan joined ManyChat in November of 2016
  • 22:38 – “Time-boxing things and putting expectations around things is never going to work”
  • 24:00 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • In new work opportunities, know your contract by heart.
  • Know your worth—don’t undervalue yourself.
  • Automation can sacrifice the emotional and interpersonal interaction with your customers.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 22, 2017

Sam Caucci. He’s the CEO of Sales Huddle, a training and development team that is using game technology to help organizations better prepare their people for the workforce.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Meditations
  • What CEO do you follow? – Jason Lemkin
  • Favorite online tool? — GrowBots
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 4
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – Sam is a big believer that you have to over-network

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:52 – Nathan introduces Sam to the show
  • 01:30 Sales Huddle is a mobile game platform for employee training
  • 01:43 Sales Huddle has everything a business needs to learn
  • 02:04 Sales Huddle is a subscription business
  • 02:10 – Pricing is from $5K to $15K
  • 02:13 – There’s a monthly recurring fee based on the number of employees on the platform
  • 02:20 – 2016 revenue closed out at $1.2M
  • 02:29 – MRR is around $800K 82 subscribed clients on the platform
  • 02:58Sales Huddle has an initial integration fee for converting a client’s current content into the platform
  • 03:18 – Most companies pay Sales Huddle an upfront payment
  • 03:36 Sales Huddle tries to get companies to pay upfront first
  • 04:03 Sales Huddle has 100% retention
  • 04:37 – Sam credits their 0 churn on the product not infringing on the customer's current learning stack yet
  • 05:10 Sales Huddle started as a part-time consulting company 6 years ago
    • 05:26 – The development of the product was in middle of 2014
    • 05:27 – Selling started in 2015
  • 05:40 – Team size is now 20
  • 06:05 Sales Huddle is currently raising and has raised $400K
  • 06:33 – The round was a kiss convertible note
  • 06:41 – A kiss convertible note converts to an equity and is similar to safe note
  • 07:44 – Many startups don’t think of their sales pipeline
  • 08:08 Sales Huddle is currently in a strong position
  • 08:40 – As a founder, Sam believes it is his responsibility to drive the shift with his team
  • 08:58 – Sam can definitely raise money through sales, but they have to think of the worst case scenario
  • 09:12 – Sam sees his company running a 100m dash; once they get to 200m, they will think about how to get to 300m
  • 09:30 – ARR goal is around 100m and they’re currently at 50m
  • 10:16 – Sam just had a daughter
  • 10:49 – Sam is building a team that is going to have your back in a bar fight
  • 11:12 Sales Huddle’s competitors
  • 11:43 Sales Huddle just started to spend money on paid acquisition
  • 11:59 Sales Huddle is almost always breaking even
  • 12:16 Sales Huddle is burning $40K-60K a month
  • 12:41 – The hardest shift for Sam
  • 13:50 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • A great retention rate could mean you’re not charging enough or your product is just that good.
  • Be the founder that your team trusts—even to the point of trusting you that raising funds is not necessary.
  • Always invest in growing your network!

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 21, 2017

Scot Wingo. He’s the CEO of Spiffy. He’s also a 4-time serial entrepreneur and industry thought leader in ecommerce and on-demand economy realm. He’s appeared on CNBC’s Today’s Show and contributed his expertise to The Wall Street Journal, New York Times along with many other publications. He previously founded Stingray Software which he sold to Rogue Wave Software, AuctionRover which was sold to GoTo/Overture, and ChannelAdvisor that went public in 2013, under the stock symbol ECOM.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Hard Thing About Hard Things
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Jeff Bezos
  • Favorite online tool? — LinkedIn
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 4-6
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “To trust your instincts and invest even more in your own companies”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Scot to the show
  • 01:29 – Spiffy is an on-demand car wash and detail company
  • 01:33 – Customers pay for car washes and Spiffy is full-stock
  • 01:59 – Spiffy is a pay-as-you-go model
  • 02:02 – Some customers would request to have their car cleaned on a regular basis so they’re currently working on a subscription plan
  • 02:30 – Having your car cleaned is addicting
  • 03:02 – Spiffy started in 2014
  • 03:17 – Scot was 46 in 2014
  • 03:26 – Scot loves building a company
  • 04:00 – In 1999, AuctionRover started
  • 04:14 AuctionRover is a search engine for auction sites
    • 04:16 – Scot always had a plan to develop software for sellers
    • 04:20 – After getting acquired, they developed the software which turned into ChannelAdvisor
  • 05:43 – They’ve raised $3M for AuctionRover
  • 05:53 – AuctionRover started to get acquisition offers
  • 06:16 – Scot was a fan of Goto
  • 06:45 – Stingray put Scot in a position where it had to work
    • 07:32 – Scot had accumulated personal debt to run Stingray
    • 07:55 – Scot was 25 when he founded Stingray
    • 08:03 – Scot had Stingray for 3 years before selling it to Rogue
    • 08:11 – Acquisition price was around $7M
    • 08:27 – It was software and Scot had a 30% margin
  • 09:07 – Scot added $3M through fundraising
    • 09:55 – Tim Draper was on Episode 129
    • 10:17 – AuctionRover’s acquisition price was $20-50M
  • 10:43 – The negotiation with Goto to buy back AuctionRover
  • 11:18 – Scot bought back AuctionRover for around $1M
    • 11:37 – They bought it back in 2001
  • 12:00 – When Scot IPOd ChannelAdvisor, everything was new to him and he had never taken a company that big before
  • 12:07 – Scot’s dad was a business person and was on Fortune Magazine
  • 12:58 – Scot always has a higher goal
  • 13:37 – “If you’ve raised a venture capital, you’re going to have an exit”
  • 13:47 – Scot wanted to see what an IPO process looked like
  • 14:02 – Scot raised capital for ChannelAdvisor
  • 14:14 – ChannelAdvisor helps retailers and brands sell on eBay, Amazon and other channels
  • 14:26 – ChannelAdvisor raised a total of $90M before the IPO
  • 15:08 – ChannelAdvisor’s market price on Day 1
  • 16:03 – Scot brought in a COO to help him
    • 16:11 – After going public, the COO was promoted to president
    • 16:20 – Scot felt he wasn’t learning much more and the president wanted to step into the CEO role
    • 16:27 – Scot felt it was a great time for the president to mature and take on the CEO position
    • 16:47 – Scot just simply sent a letter to the board about him leaving
  • 17:35 – Scot is more of a tactical entrepreneur
  • 17:47 – “I just really like solving hard problems and scaling businesses”
  • 17:55 – Everytime Scot would have a career change, it was in a different space
  • 18:05 – Since Spiffy is consumer oriented, Scot believes he can scale it faster than ChannelAdvisor
  • 18:27 – Scot’s goal for Spiffy
  • 19:35 – Scot had 2 physical car washes after selling his 2nd company
  • 19:44 – Spiffy was an MVP in 2014 when it was launched
  • 20:09 – There are reasons why customers don’t like detailing
  • 20:40 – 70% of Spiffy’s revenue is from out-work consumers
  • 21:11 – Spiffy just crossed the $200M runaway and is growing annually north of 100%
  • 21:33 – Team size in the office is around 20 and around 60 technicians
  • 22:06 – Spiffy has raised $7.5M on their series A
  • 22:18 – Scot still gets excited raising funds
  • 22:38 – Scot’s aspiration for Spiffy is bigger than his checkbook
  • 23:55 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • Always aim higher when it comes to your goals.
  • Going through multiple exits boosts your learning and experience.
  • Always trust your instincts.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 20, 2017

Dimitris Giannoccaro. He founded IAMIP, in 2013, after an extensive career in engineering and intellectual property together with some of the strongest leaders and inventors at ABB. The urgent need for digitizing an intellectual property world and maximizing the potential of intellectual property successfully has been felt during his work at his company.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – n/a
  • What CEO do you follow? – Björn Lilja of Kundo
  • Favorite online tool? — Slack
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 5
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “I would never do this again”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Dimitris to the show
  • 01:31 – IAMIP is a typical SaaS company
  • 01:56 – IAMIP is where users can collaborate in real-time in order to access all the patents
  • 02:49 – IAMIP has 3 target groups: small startups, medium-size companies and corporations
  • 03:06 – Small startups still need to know how to protect their solution
  • 03:22 – Medium and corporations are big companies and they want to make sure no one is infringing on their rights
  • 04:12 – If you want to get acquired later on, you want to make sure you don’t infringe on other’s rights
  • 04:42 – Patents are important for product
  • 04:58 – Patents are also filed on services
  • 05:32 – As a consumer, the focus is on the usability of the product or service
  • 05:40 – If you want to make money right and keep growing, you want to have your IP
  • 06:08 – Team size is 14
  • 06:19 – IAMIP was launched 3 years
  • 06:23 – Average MRR is $60K
  • 06:38 – IAMIP currently has 500 users
    • 06:54 – There are 62 paying customers
  • 07:18 – IAMIP raised 2 years ago, but it was initially bootstrapped
  • 07:34 – Dimitris was 37 when he launched IAMIP
  • 08:05 – IAMIP managed to have their first client after a few months
  • 08:22 – IAMIP has 2 founders and the split is 50/50
  • 08:59 – Dimitris regretted not inviting more people
  • 09:55 – IAMIP has raised $1M on the first round
  • 10:01 – IAMIP is in the process of raising an equity round
  • 10:27 – Dimitris based the valuation on the future number of customers
  • 11:08 – IAMIP didn’t give a discount on their first round which is an equity round
  • 11:44 – Gross customer churn
  • 12:16 – Dimitris’ tactic on having 0 churn
  • 12:46 – 2016 revenue
  • 13:08 – 2017 goal
  • 13:16 – IAMIP has recently been accepted by the UCLA Amazon program
  • 13:33 – CAC
  • 13:59 – Everybody is part of the sales team
    • 14:30 – All of the people on the team are engineers and the 7 spend additional time in sales
  • 14:51 – LTV
  • 16:17 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • Patents are important for growing businesses in order to protect your solutions.
  • Having co-founders has its advantages and can be much better than doing it solo.
  • You CAN acquire new customers without an expert salesperson.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 19, 2017

Rickard Carlsson. He’s the CEO of Detectify, a Stockholm-based security startup selected as one of Sweden’s super talents, in 2015, by the Swedish business publication, Veckans Affärer. He has lived and worked in Sweden, USA and India and holds an MSc of applied physics and electrical engineering.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Home Improvement Books
  • What CEO do you follow? – N/A 
  • Favorite online tool? — Google Calendar
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 8
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Know more about how to build a great team”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:43 – Nathan introduces Rickard to the show
  • 01:35 – Detectify integrates security testing into the development workflow
    • 01:49 – Detectify makes sure that the safety testing is brought to development
  • 02:08 – Pipedrive uses Detectify as a part of their security
    • 02:25 – Security is important for Pipedrive so they use Detectify to automate a large part of their security detecting
  • 02:54 – Average pay per customer is €80
  • 03:10 – Detectify was launched in 2014
  • 03:50 – Rickard’s co-founders who worked for the biggest tech companies had the idea of Detectify
  • 04:44 – Rickard met his co-founders at his previous job and they were Angel investors to Detectify
  • 04:58 – Rickard was a business consultant for McKinsey
  • 05:54 – Rickard started a startup to learn new things
  • 06:21 – Detectify has 4 founders and the split is not the usual 25% each
  • 06:41 – Detectify has now raised €2.5M
  • 06:49 – The last round was a priced equity round
  • 07:13 – Rickard does everything except coding including sales
  • 07:42 – Detectify managed to get 1-2 important Angels on board
  • 08:09 – Detectify is currently serving 350 customers
  • 08:20 – Majority of the customers are the long-paying customers
  • 08:45 – There’s an increasing number of larger customers
  • 08:55 – MRR is around $30K
  • 09:10 – Nathan has released interview videos on Youtube
  • 09:45 – Team size is around 25
    • 10:09 – Salaries in Europe are much smaller than in the USA
    • 10:18 – 2/3 of the team are full-time engineers
  • 11:17 – Gross customer churn
  • 11:26 – Detectify has no paid acquisition
  • 11:30 – Detectify has 2 outbound sales people who just started
  • 12:00 – The team is based in Sweden
  • 12:17 – LTV
  • 12:47 – Detectify has a few enterprise customers
    • 13:00 – Deals are usually a year contract with an upfront payment
  • 13:25 – Rickard won’t disclose what the salespeople get for every $10K deal they close
  • 15:36 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • An eagerness to learn new things is a great motivator to start one’s own business.
  • Security is simply a necessity.
  • Having different brackets of customers allows for more growth.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 18, 2017

Don Mal. He’s the CEO and co-founder of Vena Solutions which was established in 2011 and is the fastest growing provider of cloud-based corporate performance management software. Prior to Vena, he’s owned several executive tech positions along the way with companies like Clarity Systems and IBM.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Who Moved My Cheese
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Satya Nadella
  • Favorite online tool? — Dropbox
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 7-8
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “I wish I knew that sales cures all”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Don to the show
  • 01:21 – Vena was the fastest company to acquire a hundred customers
  • 01:29 – Vena is growing a 100%, year over year
  • 02:05 – CPM or corporate performance management is budgeting, planning and forecasting financial performance
  • 02:28 – A fastfood chain can use Vena’s service to capture the sales of their burger
  • 02:55 – CPM is about measuring results in a couple of different dimensions
  • 03:16 – The Top had Glen Coates of Handshake and they’re an inventory management
  • 03:31 – Vena is more horizontal based and vertical industry based
  • 04:20 – Vena doesn’t compete with Bill.com and Expensify.com
  • 04:31 – Annual RPU is $50K
  • 04:53 – Vena was launched in 2011
  • 05:02 – Team size is almost 200
  • 05:18 – Vena has raised capital with equity rounds
  • 05:49 – Don was running sales for a company in the same space that Don sold
  • 06:02 – Don has already built credibility, so he was able to convince families and friends to invest
  • 06:21 – Don has raised over a million to launch the business
  • 06:50 – Don’s process of closing
  • 07:06 – Don was able to raise $3M from other sources
  • 07:30 – If your friends and families can’t write a $25K check, a $1k check will do
  • 07:42 – Don has now raised a total of $50M
  • 08:35 – Having the right kind of partner is important in raising a round
  • 09:17 – Vena is approaching 350 paying customers
  • 09:38 – Average MRR is $1.4M
  • 09:47 – Vena finds new customers with a combination of inbound and outbound marketing
    • 10:04 – Vena also nurtures their prospects through drip campaigns
  • 10:22 – Total spend on paid acquisition is a couple of hundred grand a month
  • 10:40 – Vena has a team that does the testing for new channels
  • 11:05 – Don wants to keep their CAC below a 12-month cost of the revenue
  • 11:38 – Don is looking at a 12-month payback
  • 11:55 – LTV
    • 12:05 – A customer stays with Vena up to 10 years
  • 12:48 – Don sees the significant expansion of their platform
  • 12:55 – Client starts with 2 user cases and can end up having more than 20
  • 13:28 – Gross churn
  • 13:39 – Vena has hit their net negative revenue churn
  • 14:05 – Vena’s dollar will turn into $1.20 with their current system
  • 15:15 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • Before a big round of fundraising, master your pitch and start with your friends and families.
  • Make your product stick to your customers and you’ll experience amazing growth.
  • Have experts in your sales and marketing team; trust and release them to do their job.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 17, 2017

Victor Levitin. He’s the CEO of CrazyLister and last time he was at The Top was in late 2016. His company, Crazy Lister, has passed 2K customers, about 600K raised and about 30K in 2015 revenue. Each customer pays about $15 in monthly revenue. They’ve passed 25K in MRR with about 3% gross customer churn each month. They are based mainly in Tel Aviv with their team of 8.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Hard Thing About The Hard Things
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Jason Lemkin
  • Favorite online tool? — Intercom
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 7
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Start with SaaS, everything else does not compound”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Victor to the show
  • 01:25 – CrazyLister is the easiest way to create high-converting, mobile-optimized product listings for eBay
  • 01:36 – Investors call CrazyLister, the Wix for eBay
  • 01:49 – CrazyLister closed the door on their Tel Aviv office and focused on just working
  • 02:14 – CrazyLister has recently hit $1M in ARR
  • 02:38 – CrazyLister just passed 3.5 paying customers
  • 03:13 – CrazyLister’s growth is a combination of several tactics and strategies
  • 03:26 – CrazyLister now nailed paid acquisition
  • 03:47 – CrazyLister managed to get their CAC to LTV ratio to 1:8
  • 04:01 – CrazyLister is spending $15K a month for paid acquisition
    • 04:10 – To acquire a new customer costs $80
  • 04:29 – CrazyLister is trying every paid acquisition
    • 04:41 – CrazyLister is now focused on Google AdWords which is working quite well for them
  • 04:58 – CrazyLister couldn’t make it on Facebook
  • 05:31 – CrazyLister targets specific customer needs in retail
  • 06:15 – Victor has been in California for 2 months to discuss the future of CrazyLister
    • 06:40 – Victor came to the conclusion that with the growth that they have experienced, raising a big VC round wouldn’t be healthy for them
  • 07:06 – Victor now focuses on making e-commerce easier for retailers
  • 07:17 – CrazyLister will first prove traction beyond eBay then raise a not-so-big round to sustain growth
    • 07:35 – It will be between $1-2M
  • 07:40 – Current team size is 10
  • 07:53 – CrazyLister just hit cash flow positive in March
  • 08:03 – CrazyLister doesn’t really need capital, but wants to grow beyond eBay
  • 08:48 – CrazyLister now has 3 plans: $9/month, $25/month and $45/month
    • 09:04 – The best customers for CrazyLister are the highest paying ones
    • 09:35 – CrazyLister tries to understand their customer even before they upgrade
  • 10:24 – As CrazyLister adds more features and updates, they increase their pricing
  • 10:56 – CrazyLister has developed a feature that is beneficial for businesses
  • 11:37 – Victor has 2 co-founders
  • 11:51 – There are 3 main pillars in CrazyLister
    • 11:55 – Victor and Max, the co-founder, are the business pillars
    • 12:06 – The second pillar is the CTO
    • 12:25 – The third pillar is the paid acquisition expert
    • 12:45 – The paid acquisition expert is a full-time employee
  • 14:00 – When CrazyLister began with paid acquisition, their budget was only $5K
    • 14:08 – As the data becomes better, they’ve raised their budget as well
  • 15:34 – CrazyLister now wants to replicate what they did to eBay to other channels
  • 15:50 – 2016 total revenue
  • 16:40 – As a seller/business, you constantly need to add listings on eBay, so there’s a considerate need to use CrazyLister
  • 17:03 – Gross churn per month
  • 18:38 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • Focus in on your goals, then see if you can raise a bigger round.
  • Paid acquisition, if done well, can get you new customers consistently and help grow your company.
  • Let your pricing reflect the valuable updates and developments you make to your product.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 16, 2017

Jon Ferrara. He’s been recognized for pioneering innovation in the customer service management category for many years. Prior to founding Nimble, he was the creator and co-founder of the award-winning customer management product GoldMine. In 1999, Goldmine got acquired by FrontRange and he left to pursue other interests. During those years, he continued to watch the CRM market grow. He saw that most CRMs in the industry that were serving small businesses moved up market and became way more expensive and more complex—leaving the small business market totally underserved. It was at that point that Jon decided to create the next generation CRM product for small businesses called Nimble.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Think and Grow Rich
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Marc Benioff
  • Favorite online tool? — Buffer App
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— Around 8
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Start a business earlier”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Jon to the show
  • 01:42 – Jon was on Episode 643 of The Top
    • 01:55 – Nimble has around 10K paying customers with a monthly RPU of $20
    • 02:08 – 3% monthly churn
    • 02:14 – CAC is around $5
    • 02:24 – Team size is 25
  • 02:43 – Nimble has recently closed a $9M round
  • 03:07 – Acquiring SMBs is the exact same way they’ve scaled Goldmine
    • 03:20 – The problem with most CRMs today is that only sales and marketing people use these systems when in fact, everyone in the company should use it
    • 03:56 – Jon cold called every Novel reseller in the country when Goldmine was just starting
    • 04:00 – “People sell what they know and know what they use”
  • 04:15 – When Jon started Nimble, no one knew that social media would be the way to grow a business
  • 04:30 – Jon looked around for influencers for Nimble’s launch
    • 04:48 – Nimble is the early pioneer of influencer marketing
    • 05:08 – Nimble was getting 100K website views with 0 marketing spend
  • 05:25 – As a company scales up, it should also touch the customers in different ways
  • 05:43 – Nimble doesn’t pay influencers
  • 05:45 – To find influencers, you have to know the core influencers around your product
    • 06:00 – You find ways on how to build a relationship with influencers
  • 06:32 – Nimble will now try to get around with ad spend
  • 06:41 Jon always believed that there was another way to get access to customers
  • 06:44 – Jon is going to replicate the strategy they used with Goldmine by partnering with people similar to Microsoft and Google and get their VARs to use Nimble and start recommending it
  • 07:01 – Nimble just signed a deal with Microsoft where they can be a reseller of Nimble
    • 07:12 – Microsoft can now give their VARs Nimble so their VARs can be better, smarter and faster in sales and marketing
    • 07:33 – Nimble will work on top of Office 365 as the operating system of a business
  • 07:57 – Microsoft is currently passing their revenue to the VARs
  • 08:11 – The VARs are the one making the MRR which is 20%
  • 08:30 – Nimble’s average RPU is now around $30
  • 08:41 – If you can help a business person with their sales and marketing needs, you’re now opening yourself up to other functionalities for that customer
  • 08:53 – Every business struggles with sales, marketing and relationship management
  • 09:20 – Nimble just rolled out new pricing and marked on automation add-on
  • 10:13 – March MRR is around $225K
  • 10:25 – Nimble now has around 10.5K customers
  • 11:31 – Without relying on the VARs, it’s going to be a long term strategy for Nimble
  • 11:48 – Microsoft has bundled Nimble inside of Outlook mobile, Office 365 and Outlook desktop
    • 12:07 – It is like a free acquisition
  • 12:32 – Jon won the deal with Microsoft because of their relationship
  • 12:42 – In every business relationship, you want to know how the other person answers and what success looks like for that person
  • 13:21 – Nimble is now a free plug-in with Office 365
    • 13:37 – Users can use Nimble for free without paying $30 a month
    • 13:42 – Nimble is like Rapportive on steroids
    • 13:48 – Nimble has a limited feature for free users
  • 14:14 – Business people are the ones who usually convert to paid users
  • 14:33 – The market of Nimble is a very fragmented market
  • 14:37 – Nathan mentions the people in the same market that were on The Top:
    • 14:39 – Hatchbuck
    • 14:55 – Pipedrive
    • 15:02 – Close.io
    • 15:08 – Contactually
  • 15:29 – In a fragmented market, you need to be top of the line with your customers, influencers and with business products that people use
  • 15:52 – Nimble continues to be rated as No. 1
  • 17:00 – The way Nimble wins is how it executes the distribution channels
  • 17:13 – Team size is currently 32 and based in Santa Monica and Ukraine
  • 17:44 – You don’t go to raise with a particular value in mind
    • 17:53 – Let the market determine the value
  • 18:06 – The last round raised was a series A
    • 18:22 – Nimble has talked to a number of VCs and with this deal, they’re bringing in a seasoned CEO
  • 19:18 – What people are vetting for Nimble is the future
  • 19:41 – “We’re definitely going for a large exit with Nimble”
  • 20:14 – Office 365 is now dominating the email cloud productivity space and they’re just starting
  • 20:48 – “And Nimble, I believe, is positioned today to dominate in this space”
  • 22:05 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • In a fragmented market, you need to be TOP of line—a product that people will always recommend.
  • You have to know how a potential client answers a question and how they define success when making a deal.
  • Nurture your business relationships—this is KEY to your success.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 15, 2017

Victor Rosenman. He’s the CEO and founder of Feedvisor. Before founding Feedvisor, he was the founder of an innovative marketing startup and a senior R&D manager at Sun Microsystems. Victor holds a BSc in computer science and an executive MBA from Kellogg Northwestern.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Black Swan
  • What CEO do you follow? –  Jeff Bezos
  • Favorite online tool? — Whatsapp
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 6-8
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Whenever you make a decision, you need to think a little bit longer”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:47 – Nathan introduces Victor to the show
  • 01:24 – Feedvisor is a decision support system for large ecommerce vendors that sell through marketplaces
  • 02:57 – Most of the e-commerce that joins Feedvisor has significant business on Amazon
    • 03:06 – Before joining Feedvisor, they will be doing marketplace management through Amazon
    • 03:32 – Feedvisor makes the numbers on the marketplace right
  • 03:50 – Feedvisor looks into a load of various numbers so they can tell which price is right
    • 04:05 – Stock is almost similar to Amazon where there’s competition in prices
    • 04:20 – To look into the numbers and make decisions is tough
  • 04:42 – Feedvisor decides more on pricing, replenishment and assortment
  • 05:02 – Feedvisor charges a monthly subscription
  • 05:15 – Average customer pay is $2-3K a month
  • 06:06 – Undercuts is getting information and automated price adjustments
  • 06:20 – For every revenue Undercuts gets through the system, they pay a rev share
  • 06:40 – Not going through Feedvisor’s system will not make sense for the clients
    • 06:49 – “There’s no way you’ll be fast by doing things manually”
  • 06:55 – The rev share is a portion of the entire fee
  • 07:20 – Average rev share percentage
  • 07:38 – Majority of Feedvisor’s revenue is coming from their fixed revenue stream
  • 07:45 – Feedvisor was founded in 2011
  • 07:55 – Feedvisor was initially bootstrapped for a year
  • 08:00 – Feedvisor got an initial seat funding in 2012
    • 08:03 – It was for $500K
    • 08:11 – It was all equity
  • 08:15 – To date, Feedvisor has raised $33M
  • 08:34 – Feedvisor’s funding experience wasn’t easy but it was fair
  • 08:46 – Feedvisor was initially from Israel
  • 09:12 – Israel has a powerful VC ecosystem
    • 09:18 – It’s not different than Silicon Valley
  • 09:48 – Feedvisor’s revenue just before raising a round
  • 10:00 – When Feedvisor raised a seed round, Victor didn’t know about the e-commerce business
    • 10:16 – Feedvisor was primarily rev share when they started
    • 10:47 – Feedvisor raised funding in Q4
  • 11:45 – Victor pitched to the investors slowly
  • 12:00 – In the end, Angel investor is much more of a personal business
  • 12:55 – The series B was done with a common valuation
    • 13:09 – The common valuation for series B is 60%-150%
  • 13:30 – Team size
  • 13:40 – Feedvisor has around 500-600 customers
  • 14:12 – Average MRR
  • 14:57 – Churn is quite low
  • 15:50 – Feedvisor is close to net negative revenue churn
  • 16:10 – Feedvisor focuses on value
  • 16:57 – By optimizing Feedvisor, they create an ROI
  • 17:58 – Feedvisor is charging a fair amount and they understand their customers
  • 18:55 – Feedvisor finds customers through brand building initiatives and content marketing
    • 19:02 – Feedvisor invests a lot on brand building
    • 19:10 – “When you think Feedvisor, you think it’s a reliable solution”
    • 19:34 – Feedvisor does their own conferences
    • 19:47 – Feedvisor creates an environment where people can learn
  • 20:21 – Feedvisor has paid $3-4K for content marketing
    • 20:57 – It is about investing into everything that can help you position yourself, not just content marketing
  • 21:44 – LTV
  • 22:23 – CAC
  • 23:45 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  • People want their businesses not to just be automated, but also precise at the same time.
  • Building your brand creates a great reputation and image for your business.
  • Making big decisions requires careful consideration and time.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox  – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 14, 2017

Scott Brinker. He publishes the chief marketing technologist blog known as ChiefMartec.com and is the program chair for Martech Conference Series. He’s the author of the book Hacking Marketing published by Wiley. He’s also the co-founder of Ion Interactive, a provider of interactive content marketing software to many of the world’s leading brands. He has a degree in computer science from Columbia University and Harvard University and an MBA from MIT.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Innovator’s Dilemma
  • What CEO do you follow? – Brian Halligan
  • Favorite online tool? — Trello
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 8
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “That software can rewrite the rules of the world”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Scott to the show
  • 01:36 – There are over 3600-3800 B2B SaaS companies that Scott has worked with
  • 01:57 – Scott was researching the companies all by himself
  • 02:22 – Scott is a co-founder/CTO of B2B SaaS company, Ion Interactive
    • 02:32 – There’s also the ChiefMartec blog that Scott started 8 years ago
    • 03:00 – Scott is into how technology changes the way one manages one’s marketing
    • 03:14 – Scott is also looking at the toolsets that enable the technology in marketing
  • 03:35 – Ion Interactive is a SaaS company
  • 04:44 – Chief Martec got millions of impressions in 2016
  • 05:30 – Chief Martec’s Alexa ranking
  • 06:03 – If you can create something of value, you can succeed
  • 06:53 – Scott gets paid for most of his speaking gigs
  • 07:28 – It’s not an easy path when you’re just starting to pitch to conferences
  • 08:08 – Scott started his chart because of a speaking engagement at a conference
  • 08:40 – The first significant paying gig that Scott remembered was when a SAS hired him for a Southeast Asian tour to present the hybrid art and science of marketing
    • 09:23 – It was for 2 weeks
  • 09:35 – Martech Conference was launched in 2014 in partnership with Third Door Media
    • 09:51 – It was actually Third Door Media’s event and they just contacted Scott for content
    • 10:08 – Scott took care of the speaker side and everything that involved content
  • 11:00 – All the sectors in the space excite Scott
  • 12:27 – Scott doesn’t agree that the CRM space is going to zero
  • 13:15 – There’s so much innovation and value
  • 13:30 – The CRM companies who have been in The Top
  • 14:00 – The CRM space is still a hot space
  • 14:52 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. The marketing space has never been better because of the limitless potential of technology.
  2. If you can create something of value, you CAN succeed.
  3. Software can rewrite the rules of the world.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

Jun 13, 2017

Phil Nadel. He’s the co-founder and managing director of Barbara Corcoran Venture Partners, one of the largest and most active AngelList syndicates where investors can invest alongside him and Barbara on the same terms in promising high growth startups.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Lean Startup
  • What CEO do you follow? – Elon Musk
  • Favorite online tool? — Laughly
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 7.5
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Savor the moment, be in the moment”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:55 – Nathan introduces Phil to the show
  • 01:24 – Barbara and Phil believe in the syndicate model
    • 01:32 – It is a great opportunity for investors who would like to invest but don’t have a lot of money to put into each deal
  • 01:49 – Barbara Corcoran Venture Partners on AngelList
  • 02:08 – The syndicate was launched 3 years ago
    • 02:16 – They have syndicated 38 deals
  • 02:34 – Barn and Willow is a company they’ve recently syndicated
  • 02:51 – Barn and Willow deal with window treatments
    • 03:18 – They have a direct manufacturing supply chain
    • 03:24 – It’s an innovative company
  • 03:45 – The companies that Barbara invests on Shark Tank are separate from the companies in the syndicate
  • 04:05 – The value of doing the syndicate is the deal flow that Barbara gets from her exposure in Shark Tank
  • 04:20 – Each of the syndicate backers have the option to opt in or opt out of any investments
  • 04:33 – The most likely exit scenario is an acquisition and that’s how an investor makes money
    • 04:47 – IPO is also another route
  • 04:53 – There was no exit yet from the syndicate portfolio
  • 05:38 – There is paperwork in backing a syndicate
  • 05:45 – The AngelList platform is handling all the investor details
  • 05:51 – The structure of the deal can have a few different formats
  • 06:04 – It’s either a convertible note that converts into equity or straight equity
  • 06:30 – All backers are combined into 1 entity
  • 06:56 – The LLC is managed by an independent third party company called Assure Fund Management
    • 07:05 – Assure will consult the syndicate if there will be a major decision
  • 07:40 – The AngelList is managing the risks for the syndicate
  • 08:00 – The syndicate has put in $7.5M
  • 08:28 – The syndicate is very true to Barbara’s mission
  • 08:44 – Barbara wants people to invest with her, share their ideas with her, and bring their knowledge
  • 08:56 – “Our backers are fantastic in terms of their networks”
  • 09:38 – With a VC, what you have is strictly financial investors
  • 10:40 – People love Barbara
  • 11:15 – The deals are only available to accredited investors
    • 11:23 – To be an accredited investor, you need to meet some of the criteria including net worth or income
    • 12:00 – The syndicate is very clear that there is a chance of losing money for each investment
  • 12:06 – The idea is to build a portfolio
  • 12:37 – Phil has been to different platforms like FundersClub and OurCrowd
  • 12:53 – The reason why Phil and Barbara chose AngelList
  • 13:35 – The picture behind Phil was a picture frame from one of their portfolio companies called Meural
    • 13:54 – They have thousands of art pieces from different museums around the world
    • 14:32 – It retails from $600
  • 15:27 – The syndicate does equity and note and only invests in post-revenue companies
    • 15:43 – At least $15-20K a month in revenue
    • 15:52 – “We are focused on companies that are capital efficient”
  • 17:50 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Syndicates is a great option for small investors and it will help them get into the investing game.
  2. Investors need to be responsible with their investments—meaning research the deal and own their decisions and the consequences of saying yea or nay.
  3. Savor the moments in life and be IN the moment.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
Jun 12, 2017

Joseph May. He’s the founder of the Breton Company. He launched his company in 2016 by running a Kickstarter campaign for a modern day briefcase. Prior to Breton, he worked as an attorney at a couple of different law firms and was director of operations and in-house counsel at a company called Freshly Picked.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Shoe Dog
  • What CEO do you follow? – Steve Jobs
  • Favorite online tool? — Grum
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 5-6
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Keep going”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:22 – Nathan introduces to the show
  • 01:19 – Joseph left the legal company because there was no fun
  • 01:23 – When Joseph was at Freshly Picked, he found out that he really liked to create products and be part of the design process
  • 01:33 – Joseph had the idea of Breton when he was in Italy
  • 01:59 – Joseph was 33 when he left Freshly Picked where he was getting $70-80K
    • 02:28 – Joseph had kids when he started Breton
  • 03:28 – Joseph is showing Nathan an example of the briefcase
  • 03:45 – On Kickstarter, Joseph did $240K and $280K for Indiegogo
  • 03:54 – Kickstarter is the biggest website to start and Indiegogo has Indiegogo on demand
    • 04:29 – The total for both campaigns was 1200 units
  • 05:00 – At Freshly Picked, Joseph learned a lot about Instagram marketing
  • 05:38 – Zach from Episode 178 had his hand on the Kickstarter campaign and has a network which has done over $60M in funding campaigns
  • 06:00 – Zach worked with Joseph
  • 06:38 – Joseph had a lot of manufacturing contacts from Freshly Picked
  • 06:44 – Joseph got a quote from overseas and moved their manufacturing to Asia, switched up their whole campaign and changed the price point
  • 07:14 – Breton is totally bootstrapped
  • 07:47 – Total sales as of today is $400K in revenue and 1900 units
  • 08:06 – Goal for 2017 is to launch more Kickstarter campaigns
  • 08:37 – The bestseller is the modern day briefcase which is $199
  • 08:54 – It takes around $65 to produce a bag
    • 09:04 – The leather is from Italy
    • 09:16 – Jeremy really wants to have a high-quality bag
  • 09:26 – $20-30 dollars is spent on marketing per bag
  • 09:58 – Average profit per bag
  • 10:28 – Jeremy had dark traffic on ly
    • 10:42 – There’s no exact influencer who has driven the most sales to Instagram
    • 10:51 – Mollyblogger has sold 17 units within an hour
    • 11:07 – Mollyblogger is Joseph’s friend
  • 11:25 – For every $500 per post, Jeremy expects to get 5 sales
  • 11:33 – Breton now has 40K followers
  • 11:50 – It’s difficult to calculate the return because it takes time before a customer purchases
  • 12:21 – Joseph had a campaign in Fall where he had help, but now he’s doing it on his own
  • 12:40 – One of Joseph’s growth strategy is to get people on their email list
    • 12:44 – The main focus now is to make people aware of Breton and aggregate the information
  • 13:40 – The bags are made with wax cotton which is water-resistant
  • 14:03 – Customers often look for the look
  • 14:30 – The bags are made to last
  • 14:38 – Team size is 2.5
  • 14:51 – Joseph won’t give up a part of the company
    • 15:49 – “I don’t know exactly what we’re doing”
  • 16:48 – Chubbies Shorts is effectively using Instagram
  • 16:55 – Breton’s Instagram
  • 17:24 – There’s a big percentage of women buying the Breton bags, too
  • 18:58 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Choose a job where you can earn and have fun at the same time.
  2. Nurture your connections and network.
  3. Don’t give up a part of your company if you’re not confident doing so.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

Jun 11, 2017

Jeremy Ozen. He’s the president and co-founder of Vistar Media. He was previously a Goldman Sachs European Special Situations in London monitoring a portfolio of venture investments. He also has a BS in Material Science Engineering and a BSc in Finance from the University of Pennsylvania. 

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Sam Walton’s Biography
  • What CEO do you follow? – 3G Capital Founders
  • Favorite online tool? — Gmail Calendar
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 7
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – Jeremy wished he had not taken life so seriously and not every day is the end of the world

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:43 – Nathan introduces Jeremy to the show
  • 01:15 – Vistar Media connects a technology to a software that runs digital billboard
  • 01:35 – Vistar Media makes money by selling the technology or ads to the advertisers or agencies
  • 01:52 – Vistar Media pays the media to access the platform then charges advertising agencies to use their technology
  • 02:18 – VistarMedia doesn’t have a financial risk because the system is a real-time system
    • 02:28 – There is a real-time buying of ad inventory
  • 02:53 – VistarMedia’s technology can adjust to digital ones
    • 03:06 – VistarMedia uses data for telecoms especially the location data of consumers to analyze where the consumers are within a day
  • 04:20 – Jeremy started with Goldman Sachs in London
  • 04:45 – Goldman had 2 groups, one is in stocks and the other is the special situations
  • 05:20 – Jeremy stayed with Goldman for 2 years
  • 05:22 – Jeremy then went to a hedge fund based in Monaco
  • 06:12 – Jeremy became friends with people in Monaco
    • 06:30 – There was a guy who has a very successful business in Poland
  • 07:31 – Jeremy accepted and liked the concept of knowing something that is already working
  • 08:10 – Jeremy has a friend who was working for a company that was founded by Google in 2010
    • 08:23 – They’re one of the first to do programmatic advertising
    • 08:59 – Jeremy then realized that what this company was doing for online advertising would eventually be the way for every type of advertising
  • 10:54 – When Jeremy started, they knew the out-of-home advertising space was growing in terms of how much is digital
  • 11:19 – Vistar Media needed to work with different media outlets explaining to them how to integrate into their system
    • 11:28 – The idea of programmatic advertising was totally foreign to them
  • 11:39 – Vistar Media was launched in 2012
  • 12:48 – Team size is 55
  • 12:52 – Vistar Media raised in 2013 a convertible round
  • 13:15 – Vistar Media hasn’t raised a series A and will not raise one
  • 14:01 – The biggest expenses of Vistar Media is the cost of media
  • 15:20 – Jeremy has thought of buying Upfront
  • 16:01 – Vistar Media has a difference in capital with the billboard guys
  • 16:43 – Jeremy would describe themselves as the biggest billboard company in the USA
    • 16:46 – They have all these big partners that work with them
  • 17:29 – Vistar Media is bringing the billboard companies new money
  • 18:02 – Vistar Media is the only player of programmatic advertising out-of-home
  • 18:15 – $7B has been spent on billboards annually
  • 18:27 – Jeremy is now 31
  • 18:51 – Personally, when Jeremy started Vistar Media, they thought they were building a VC tech like business
  • 19:12 – Jeremy built a business to have an exit at some point
  • 19:48 – The best way to grow your value is by growing your business
  • 20:05 – Jeremy is paying himself $50K a year
  • 20:35 – Goal for 2017
  • 21:45 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Going from one field to another is not that difficult if you really want and need a change.
  2. You grow your value by growing your business.
  3. There’s a time to work hard and a time to play hard.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

Jun 10, 2017

Dani Golan who oversees strategy, a go-to market, and overall company operations at Kaminario. Previously, Dani served as president and general manager of Performix technology which was acquired by Nice Systems in 2006. Prior to Performix, he served as an executive responsible for leading new ventures at EMC. He holds a BSc of electrical engineering, summa cum laude at Technion – Israel Institute of Technology and an MBA from The Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Prior to his professional career, Dani served as a fighter pilot and officer in the Israeli Air Force.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Goal
  • What CEO do you follow? – N/A
  • Favorite online tool? — Skype
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— Quite inconsistent
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – Dani would tell himself to focus on what’s important

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Dani to the show
  • 01:33 – Being a fighter pilot and an entrepreneur are similar things for Dani
  • 01:57 – Kaminario is an infrastructure for the cloud
  • 02:47 – Kaminario brings efficiency to data sets, data centers and data bases
  • 02:50 – Kaminario is the development of net generation data storage infrastructure
  • 03:02 – Most of Kaminario’s customers are net generation business models
    • 03:13 – They needed a completely different data infrastructure that can grow with them
    • 03:37 – Legacy enterprises generates more data
  • 03:51 – Kaminario has raised a total of $280M including their latest round of $75M
  • 04:30 – Kaminario is dealing with 2 of hottest markets in IT: flash and cloud
    • 04:42 – Flash created the opportunity for Kaminario to be in the greatest revolution for IT
  • 05:40 – If you’re pushing your valuation to perfection, there is no perfection in IT
  • 06:05 – Make sure you have a fair valuation for your company
  • 06:24 – The sentiment of investors is that they appreciate the growth in the past but now they’re asking for real businesses, especially when it comes to IT
    • 06:49 – Investors want to see pass the profitability
  • 07:09 – Kaminario is closed to profitability
  • 07:30 – Kaminario’s past investors have also participated and shared significantly
  • 09:00 – Businesses should protect their employees
  • 09:44 – When you are getting money for the company, 3 means you have to get $3M to the investors
  • 10:40 – “Valuation is bullsh*t if you have crazy terms”
  • 10:50 – Employees are far more important than actual valuation
  • 11:05 – Kaminario was launched in 2008 on April fools’ day which is the same as Apple
  • 11:57 – Kaminario now has thousands of customers
  • 12:21 – How fast a specific customer is going to buy more is one of the metrics that Kaminario measures
  • 12:51 – Kaminario is doing serve and apply which is software, hardware and service
  • 13:30 – Kaminario sells to cloud providers or to the SaaS companies
    • 13:44 – The SaaS is the larger revenue source
  • 13:57 – By 2019, the total cloud market will be 175B
    • 14:03 – Around 120B are SaaS companies
  • 15:32 – SaaS companies charge their customers monthly
    • 15:37 – SaaS companies pay Kaminario a one-time fee for infrastructure
    • 15:46 – There is an on-going payment for maintenance
  • 16:20 – The expansion revenue
    • 16:28 – If a SaaS company started with $300K, they will go over $1M by the end of 12 months
  • 17:45 – Team size is 250 but the inside sales team isn’t that big
  • 18:17 – Kaminario has a presence in the market
  • 18:57 – Data grows exponentially every year
  • 19:23 – Normally, customers would start cautiously and would just eventually gain trust in Kaminario
  • 19:55 – First metric to measure the 3x growth is by capacity
  • 20:45 – Kaminario is the most scalable product in the market
    • 20:50 – Kaminario can fit roughly 12 terabytes of 400K iPhones
  • 21:48 – Kaminario has never lost a customer
  • 22:00 – Kaminario is a big funnel
  • 22:12 – Kaminario’s revenue stream is 50% from new sign-ups and 50% from existing
  • 24:04 – Kaminario’s last round was closed in Q4 of 2016
  • 24:41 – When you are in Kaminario’s business, it’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon
  • 25:00 – Kaminario’s number one competitor is EMC
  • 26:06 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Valuation is useless if you’re aiming for perfection, there will always be flaws.
  2. Focus on keeping your employees and customers happy.
  3. A customer won’t easily trust a product at first so you have to earn that trust, ensuring they stay longer.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

Jun 9, 2017

Jay Jumper. He’s the founder, CEO and President of SIGNiX. As a highly regarded entrepreneur, Jay has worked to establish the company as the leading cloud-based digital signature solution which is a hot space. He has more than 20 years in financial services and technology management experience. Additionally, Jay graduated from University of Tennessee in 1985 with a BS in marketing.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Trump: The Art of the Deal
  • What CEO do you follow? – Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett and Mark Cuban
  • Favorite online tool? — Email
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 5-7
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – Jay would tell himself that hard work and perseverance outdoes anything else

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:45 – Nathan introduces Jay to the show
  • 01:33 – SIGNiX is the only cloud-based digital signature company in North America
    • 01:44 – SIGNiX is an independent e-signature solution
  • 02:00 – Jay shows Nathan a visual of a cloud-based digital signature
    • 02:08 – Put a signature on the overlight, not on the document
    • 02:48 – You depend on the e-signature vendor to be around forever so they can validate the signature
    • 02:56 – On the overlight is a hyperlink that redirects the person to the e-signature provider
  • 03:38 – With SIGNiX, every signature is embedded onto the document
  • 03:52 – SIGNiX is a SaaS model
  • 04:08 – SIGNiX focuses on security
  • 04:32 – 80% of SIGNiX is sold to software partners
    • 04:37 – SIGNiX enables software partners to capture the e-signature market that is sitting on their software
    • 05:05 – Software partners can privately label SIGNiX so they can rebrand it according to whatever the product is
  • 05:25 – SIGNiX does a revenue share with their software partners
  • 05:32 – SIGNiX gives their software partners a highly robust digital signature solution
  • 06:08 – SIGNiX’s pricing on their website
    • 06:10 – $240 per seat equals to 240 transactions a year
  • 06:22 – SIGNiX’s emphasis is on supporting their partners
  • 06:54 – SIGNiX goes to different industries and tries to match pricing based on the industry
  • 07:37 – SIGNiX has very robust APIs which is the core of the business
  • 08:11 – The key things that SIGNiX offers: everything is embedded in the document and documents can be deleted from SIGNiX
    • 08:18 – A dependent e-signature always has 2 copies, one for the company and one for the customer
  • 09:04 – What SIGNiX is doing is much more difficult
  • 09:30 – Team size is 50
  • 10:00 – SIGNiX was launched in 2002 and was acquired from another company
  • 10:12 – ProNvest is a robo advisor that Jay also owns
  • 10:45 – SIGNiX is a bigger revenue stream for Jay
  • 10:57 – The market for e-signature is very large
  • 11:35 – ProNvest provides management counseling to the 41K marketplace
    • 11:47 – In 2007, more people in 41K are taking their money out rather than contributing
    • 12:06 – Jay really wanted a tool set to work with their 41K providers to help them retain their assets
    • 12:17 – Jay wanted the providers to retain their assets through electronic signatures
  • 12:24 – SIGNiX called Jay
    • 12:40 – The company was struggling and Jay became an investor in the company
    • 12:52 – Jay invested around 50% of the company
    • 13:05 – There was an offer from a public company to buy the company after Jay invested
    • 13:22 – The offer was 5x what Jay paid for
    • 14:00 – In 2001, it was good to have a “.com” but in 2002, Jay needed to have revenue
  • 14:23 – Jay saw the need for having SIGNiX regardless of its previous company struggles
  • 14:33 – Jay really bolted SIGNiX and passed it on an incubator
  • 15:04 – The previous company just spent money on the technology and was burning cash
  • 15:43 – SIGNiX now has 670K customers
    • 15:52 – It is a combination of seats and customers
  • 16:30 – Average MRR
  • 16:57 – SIGNiX gives discounts to their partners
  • 17:18 – If you’re working with a software company, you have to figure out a number that works for their customers
  • 18:02 – The number that Jay gave was an annual number
  • 18:20 – SIGNiX does not focus on their competitors because they have a very different product
  • 18:48 – SIGNiX wants to go and find the top software developers in every industry and partner with them
    • 19:03 – First thing that SIGNiX looks for in a software partner is their position and role in their particular industry
    • 19:10 – Ziplogix partnered with SIGNiX and named their solution, Digital Ink
    • 19:25 – SIGNiX has a large portion of realtors in their network
    • 19:35 – SIGNiX doesn’t mind being behind the scenes
  • 19:55 – SIGNiX is not a reseller and it becomes the key feature of the product
  • 20:18 – SIGNiX doesn’t have a standard percentage split because it varies per company
  • 20:49 – Jay did a lot of self-funding for SIGNiX, but has also raised capital which is an 8-figure total
  • 21:18 – ProNvest is the largest investor in SIGNiX but they needed outside investors to scale
  • 21:38 – The funding rounds SIGNiX had in 2016 had a total of around $90M
  • 23:30 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Develop and scale your product until you become a totally different product from your competitors.
  2. A business that is struggling does NOT mean that it will struggle forever; decide if the company is worth acquiring and if you can grow it into a profitable business.
  3. It’s okay if you’re not in the limelight—so long as you’re getting paid and revenue continues to multiply.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Hotjar – Gives Nathan a recording of what is happening on a website or where are people clicking and scrolling on the website
  • Organifi – The juice was Nathan’s life saver during his trip in Southeast Asia
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Freshbooks – Nathan doesn’t waste time so he uses Freshbooks to send out invoices and collect his money. Get your free month NOW

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

Jun 8, 2017

Niko Skievaski. He’s the co-founder of Redox, a modern API for healthcare. He also used to do some work at Epic.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Moments of Magic
  • What CEO do you follow? – Judith Faulkner
  • Favorite online tool? — Calendly
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 6
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – Niko would have asked himself to start something rather than working in a big bank

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:40 – Nathan introduces Niko to the show
  • 00:59 – Redox connects applications to software developers
  • 01:04 – Redox’s business model is licensing connections to various healthcare systems
  • 01:25 – Niko deals with healthcare because he believes it is important
  • 01:33 – Niko has also talked to developers that made an impact on patients’ lives
  • 01:46 – “From our perspective, we really see a technology innovation healthcare something that is absolutely needed”
  • 02:20 – Redox charges software developers and software developers charge the healthcare system
    • 02:38 – Redox initially becomes a sub-contractor of software vendors
  • 03:21 – Redox charges per the number of connections a developer has in the healthcare system which is a monthly model
    • 03:48 – Depending on the interface, the charge changes a bit
    • 03:52 – It is a SaaS model
  • 04:08 – Most developers connect to 1-3 healthcare systems
    • 04:15 – Each connection system is around a thousand dollars
  • 04:25 – Redox was founded in 2014
  • 04:34 – Niko was in the corporate world and was working at Wells Fargo
    • 04:46 – Niko went to Epic to get his hands on data because he studied Economics and wanted to understand what he could do to improve the healthcare data
    • 05:07 – When Niko got to Epic, they didn’t actually have the data
    • 05:17 – Niko learned a lot from Epic about the provider workflow
  • 05:29 – Since healthcare is digitized, the challenge is how to get the data out of the cloud to software developers
  • 05:43 – Niko’s CTO and co-founder, James, was helping startups hook up with various healthcare systems
  • 05:59 – The idea of Redox is to make an engine that can scale across multiple health systems
  • 06:16 – Redox was bootstrapped and has raised capital
  • 06:30 – Niko and his co-founder have started different companies until they decided to do Redox
    • 06:50 – They brought in another co-founder to round up Redox
  • 07:00 – Niko and his co-founders worked in a co-working space and saved some money from their consulting gigs
  • 07:21 – Redox raised a small seed round of $350K in 2014, then they hired some developers
  • 07:40 – The co-founders were only getting $35K each when they were starting
    • 08:05 – They made sacrifices in order to start Redox
    • 08:51 – They have to convince themselves that if things don’t work, they just have to get a job
  • 09:11 – Entrepreneurs can easily get a job
  • 09:30 – Redox has raised a couple of rounds
  • 09:40 – The first application they had can determine the amount of blood loss by taking a picture
  • 10:06 – It took Redox 10 months to get live with their first customer
  • 10:17 – Redox raised their round A early
  • 10:29 – The developer community was really excited and was supportive of Redox
  • 10:52 – Redox was getting 1K MRR from their first customer
  • 11:00 – The first round was a priced round
  • 11:11 – You can raise based on your traction or based on potential
    • 11:28 – Redox was based on potential
  • 11:38 – Redox’s pitch to their investors
    • 11:40 – Digital health is one of the fastest growing spaces for venture capital
    • 11:44 – There are too many companies trying to start something innovative in the healthcare space
    • 11:47 – The common problem that they have is sharing data with the legacy system
    • 12:10 – Redox really has a great team
    • 12:30 – It’s not about the MRR, it’s about the potential of working with the army of software developers who are innovating in this space
    • 12:53 – Redox’s marketing strategy is getting the developers first, then the developers will drag Redox to the healthcare system
  • 13:10 – Valuation
  • 13:24 – Redox has closed another $9M with their series B round in January
  • 13:40 – Total amount raised is $14M
  • 13:48 – The new additional investor is Intermountain Healthcare System
  • 14:20 – Redox currently has 100 healthcare systems across USA
  • 15:13 – Redox has around $400K MRR
  • 15:45 – Customer churn
  • 16:13 – CAC
  • 16:44 – Team size is 35 who are mostly developers
  • 16:59 – Redox is a developer platform
    • 17:06 – Most are based in Wisconsin and some are based around USA
  • 17:46 – Niko won’t sell Redox even if they already had an acquisition offer before
    • 18:08 – Niko didn’t think that the company acquiring Redox would be able to solve the problem as fast as Niko and the team
  • 18:32 – Niko will accept an acquisition offer only if the company will be able to do it faster than Niko and the team
  • 19:50 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. The continuous innovation in the healthcare space needs a data source that is stable.
  2. Stick with your principles and be focused on where you want the company to go.
  3. Raising capital can be based on your traction or the potential of your business.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Hotjar – Gives Nathan a recording of what is happening on a website or where are people clicking and scrolling on the website
  • Organifi – The juice was Nathan’s life saver during his trip in Southeast Asia
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Freshbooks – Nathan doesn’t waste time so he uses Freshbooks to send out invoices and collect his money. Get your free month NOW

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

Jun 7, 2017

Felix Van de Maele. He’s the CEO and one of the co-founders of Collibra which he took the idea of funding to more than years of record growth and industry leadership. He’s responsible for the company’s global business strategy. Prior to Collibra, Felix served as a researcher at the Semantics of Technology and Applications Research Laboratory at a university in Brussels where he focused on the technology crawlers on the semantic web and semantic data integration. He holds a masters in computer science and software engineering from that university and masters of general management from Vlerick Business School.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Crossing the Chasm
  • What CEO do you follow? – n/a
  • Favorite online tool? — Evernote
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 6-8
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “I won’t change much”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:39 – Nathan introduces Felix to the show
  • 01:33 – Collibra is a SaaS company helping larger organizations to better find, understand and control their data
  • 01:47 – Collibra started in financial services
    • 01:53 – Every bank needs data governance, which is what Collibra does
    • 01:58 – Data governance is needed for regulatory compliance
  • 02:16 – Collibra now covers different industries
  • 02:25 – Collibra was launched in 2008
  • 02:31 – Collibra raised capital
    • 02:40 – Collibra raised a seed round of €800K as Felix’s first company
    • 02:48 – They bootstrapped after their profitability tripled every year
    • 00:57 – They’ve raised their first bigger round which is a series B of $20M in 2014
    • 03:14 – In December 2016, they did a $50M series C round
  • 03:27 – Felix is now 32 and has been focusing on Collibra for almost a decade now
  • 04:00 – Felix uses the analogy of the library and the index card that is used in a library to elaborate data governance
    • 04:09 – A library card with all its information is similar to an organization with all its data
    • 04:27 – Collibra wants to get to the Amazon of the notifications of data
  • 04:46 – Collibra is similar to a search engine for data sets
    • 04:59 – Now everybody does data and it’s chaos
  • 05:14 – Collibra has close to 200 customers
  • 05:25 – RPU is $200-250K annually
  • 05:41 – Average customer pay per month is 20K
  • 05:46 – Collibra has annual plans with cash upfront
  • 06:13 – Collibra started with a perpetual model which is a licensing fee upfront, then they have the software
    • 06:29 – There’s an annual maintenance fee which is 20% of the initial fee
  • 06:46 – ARR is $10-30M
  • 07:00 – The idea of Collibra
    • 07:13 – Felix had 4 options after graduation
    • 07:23 – Felix was inspired by a book he read and thought that he could start his own business
  • 07:57 – Collibra has 4 founders
    • 08:25 – The equity is just 25%
  • 08:55 – The founders split the shareholders from their management
    • 09:06 – “We try to separate the 2 as much as possible”
  • 09:40 – The investors own a different range in Collibra
  • 09:55 – The percentage of the company that they give away during the series C depends on the trajectory and how much money is raised
  • 10:12 – The biggest round for Collibra is the series B
  • 10:39 – Collibra’s trajectory is to have $100M ARR as quickly as possible
  • 10:59 – The picking of investors is mostly because of the valuation, but there are other factors involved
  • 11:27 – Collibra picked Matthew of Iconic because he clicked well
  • 12:00 – Customer churn is 3-4%
  • 12:30 – Net revenue expansion
  • 12:52 – CAC
    • 13:30 – Some of Collibra’s customers have been with them for several years
  • 14:08 – Collibra looks at their sales efficiency and their marketing efficiency
    • 04:13 – The marketing dominance they’re spending to generate $1 of ARR is around 0.8-0.9
    • 14:30 – It costs $1 in sales and marketing to generate $1 in ARR
    • 14:42 – Payback time is around 12 months
  • 14:54 – Team size is 210
    • 15:00 – Biggest team is in New York, engineering team is in Brussels and sales and marketing in London
    • 15:30 – The HQ transferred to New York because most of the customers are in USA
  • 16:25 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. There are so many data sources available and it’s difficult to know which one has the most accurate data.
  2. You need to find a way to govern the data that you have—this helps in regulatory compliance.
  3. Sometimes, ignorance IS bliss—it can cause you to take more risks.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Hotjar – Gives Nathan a recording of what is happening on a website or where are people clicking and scrolling on the website
  • Organifi – The juice was Nathan’s life saver during his trip in Southeast Asia
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Freshbooks – Nathan doesn’t waste time so he uses Freshbooks to send out invoices and collect his money. Get your free month NOW

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

Jun 6, 2017

Vinod Muthukrishnan. He was first a sailor then a strategist and now an entrepreneur. He was fortunate and has worked in diverse and challenging environments starting with the Merchant Navy, a high energy mobile first financial technology startup where he had a strategy and global sales. Now, he currently serves as co-founder and CEO of a company called Cloudcherry, a tech startup based in Pleasanton, California with offices in Singapore, India and a new location Vinod will show.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – High Output Management
  • What CEO do you follow? – Nick Mehta
  • Favorite online tool? — Trello
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 4.5-5
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – Vinod wished he knew programming back then

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:46 – Nathan introduces to the show
  • 01:22 – The new location is in Salt Lake City
  • 01:36 – Cloudcherry has 74 people
    • 01:40 – They are based in India and Singapore
  • 01:47 – Cloudcherry has raised $7M with a total of around $9.5M raised
  • 01:56 – Cloudcherry is a custom platform for millennials
  • 02:13 – Millennials have complicated journeys with the brands they work with
    • 02:21 – In 2017, if you want to understand your customers, you have to be in all the platforms
  • 02:47 – Cloudcherry is a feedback platform on speed across all platforms
  • 03:07 – Cloudcherry has an inspirational wall in their office where employees can post things they find inspirational
    • 03:18 – “You need to walk into your office every day and be inspired on what you believe in”
    • 03:40 – Whoever visits their office can put their names on the wall
  • 03:50 – Cloudcherry has the 6 pillars of their culture: freedom, ownership, smart work, passion and some more
  • 04:03 – Vinod introduced Nathan to some of the people in the office
  • 04:40 – The office is 2000 sq. ft.
    • 05:05 – Vinod shows Nathan the view from the office
  • 05:27 – Cloudcherry was launched in 2014
  • 05:34 – Cloudcherry is a SaaS business
  • 05:48 – Cloudcherry had their last fund raising September 2016
  • 05:58 – Cloudcherry has close to 100 customers
    • 06:05 – “The massive push now is to grow the business in North America”
  • 06:37 – The team in America targets mid-market and enterprise businesses
  • 06:47 – Average customer pay per month is a couple of hundred from SMBs
    • 06:57 – Mid-market and enterprise average a thousand dollars a month
  • 07:23 – Cloudcherry has a complex mix of customers
    • 07:58 – They are doing more than 88K per month
  • 08:13 – Cloudcherry has almost zero customer churn with SMB at the moment
  • 08:35 – Cloudcherry’s enterprise churn is higher than SMBs
  • 09:00 – Most of Cloudcherry’s customers are with them for 18-20 months
  • 09:33 – Cloudcherry ran out of the market in 2015
  • 09:48 – SMBs are customers whose ARPU is south of 20K
  • 10:18 – Cloudcherry currently has 35% of mid-market and enterprise customers and 65% of SMBs
  • 11:10 – Cloudcherry ‘s time to recover CAC is around 12 months
    • 12:09 – Average CAC is $7K-12K
  • 12:25 – LTV is around $36K
  • 12:35 – “Some amount of the optimism needs to be weighed with intellectual honesty”
  • 12:45 – The greatest predictor of LTV for Vinod is the churn
  • 13:10 – Cloudcherry focuses on customer delight
    • 13:22 – Cloudcherry got feedback on how delighted their customers are
  • 13:45 – If a customer stays with you, it will impact your churn and LTV
  • 14:11 – Cloudcherry is still burning cash at the moment
    • 14:34 – “We have money to burn from growth”
  • 14:47 – December 2017 goal MRR
  • 15:32 – SaaS business should continuously grow in numbers
  • 16:57 – The Famous Five

3 Key Points:

  1. Make your employees look forward to going to the office every day.
  2. When your customers are satisfied with your business, the numbers will just follow.
  3. SaaS businesses should constantly track their numbers.

 

Resources Mentioned:

  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • Hotjar – Gives Nathan a recording of what is happening on a website or where are people clicking and scrolling on the website
  • Organifi – The juice was Nathan’s life saver during his trip in Southeast Asia
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Freshbooks – Nathan doesn’t waste time so he uses Freshbooks to send out invoices and collect his money. Get your free month NOW

Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives

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