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SaaS Interviews with CEOs, Startups, Founders

What if you knew data behind the fastest growing SaaS companies today? Each morning join Nathan Latka as he spends 15 minutes interviewing SaaS founders. You'll learn how SaaS CEO's launched their startup and grew it into a business. SaaS Founders range from bootstrapped to funded, MVP to 10,000 customers, pre revenue to pre IPO.
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Now displaying: Category: Business
Aug 13, 2017

Mikita Mikado. He’s the CEO of PandaDoc, a company founded to accelerate the way organizations transact. He’s an entrepreneur, engineer, and executive focused on creating self-sustaining companies.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Pitch Anything
  • What CEO do you follow? – Satya Nadella
  • 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? – Mikita would tell himself that he doesn’t have to focus on making so much money and just focus on learning as much as he can

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:24 – Nathan introduces Mikita to the show
  • 02:03 – Jared Fuller was in episode 193 of The Top and is still part of PandaDoc
  • 02:25 – PandaDoc helps organizations the way they transact
    • 02:39 – all kinds of transactions
  • 02:52 – PandaDoc focuses on deals that have substantial value and paperwork
  • 03:06 – PandaDoc can build proposals, quotes, contracts and close deals in a digital fashion
  • 03:30 – PandaDoc’s RPU has increased since last year
  • 03:56 – Annual deals
    • 04:10 – Average customer pay
  • 05:10 – PandaDoc gets most of their customers from word of mouth
    • 05:32 – Using SEO to expand operations
  • 06:15 – PandaDoc gives their small customers templates that they can use in their deals
  • 06:58 – The marketing team finds keywords that are most popular and relevant to them
    • 07:20 – They use Moz and other tools to find keyword
  • 07:59 – PandaDoc isn’t built on top of PDF
  • 08:03 – The templates from PandaDoc are in HTML and not PDF
  • 08:41 – QuoteRoller was the first product that was launched in 2011
    • 08:56 – Pivot to PandaDoc at the end of 2015
  • 09:06 – Team size is now 106
  • 09:23 – The last year total raised was $4.5M in cash and $2M in debt
    • 09:41 – Currently, debt has been paid
    • 09:50 – Total amount raised is $19.5M
  • 10:17 – PandaDoc has more than 7K customers
    • 10:30 – 2 different cohorts of customers
    • 10:55 – PandaDoc has a legacy product and a new product
  • 11:22 – Gross churn is satisfactory
    • 11:50 – From last year’s revenue churn, it was 9%
    • 13:21 – Some inbound marketers use PandaDoc to close a deal then will stop using it
    • 13:50 – 5% monthly logo churn is high for Mikita
  • 14:38 – PandaDoc has around 100 team members and 2 are focused on target customers
  • 15:13 – CAC and LTV varies
  • 16:00 – Mikita is trying to get under 12 months of payback period
  • 16:29 – Fully weighted CAC can be $1200
    • 16:48 – How Mikita assumes CAC
  • 18:47 – The industry’s rule of thumb for payback period is 1.13 of ACV or 14 month payback period
  • 19:05 – PandaDoc has channels with a payback period of 6 months and 2 years
  • 19:29 – PandaDoc has an outbound sales team that is their delta force
    • 19:54 – The outbound sales team finds the industries that PandaDoc should target
    • 21:05 – Paid spend total is under quarter of a million
    • 21:19 – PandaDoc is closed to hit a million in MRR
      • 22:08 – “We want to make an impact”
      • 22:22 – This is a horizontal product
    • 23:47 – PandaDoc focuses on workflow and the actual collaboration on the workflow
      • 23:58 – “We want to system of records for deals or transaction”
    • 24:05 – PandaDoc isn’t going to the CRM space
      • 24:18 – Mikita has been in the CRM space before
      • 24:43 – One of the challenges of CRM now is the emergence of AI
    • 27:12 – Mikita’s consideration on price of acquisition
    • 30:20 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Create a product that can serve a different market and fill the gap that the others haven’t seen.
  2. Let your goals guide you, but also keep in mind that having a business means being responsible for your employees.
  3. Multiple revenue cohorts will lead you to multiple marketing and sales strategies.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 12, 2017

Gavin Wheeldon. With over 15 years of experience working in technology led or enabled businesses, Gavin has a deep understanding of the impact of technology on the bottom line of an organization. He sold his last business, Applied Language Solutions, a global language technology and service business, and has used some of the earnings to set up a new company, Purple WiFi.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Who Moved My Cheese
  • What CEO do you follow? – Jack Welch
  • Favorite online tool? — InsightSquared
  • 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? – “I’d rather read more of finance”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:24 – Nathan introduces Gavin to the show
  • 02:29 – Gavin travels a lot and is frequently reliant on public WiFi—that’s where the idea for Purple WiFi came from
  • 03:02 – Gavin sold his last company for over $60M
    • 03:20 – His last company was in the translation and interpretation industry
    • 03:23 – They used machine learning to translate languages with incredible accuracy
    • 03:43 – Theirs is also a human editing in between so the translation is perfect
    • 03:59 – Gavin was 36 when he sold it
    • 04:02 – It was completely bootstrapped
  • 04:44 – There’s no particular single owner of the space
    • 04:54 – Fon does domestic hotspot and other traditional utility wifi
  • 05:38 – Purple Wifi is the next generation of wifi
  • 06:03 - Purple WiFi is SaaS business, charging annually depending on the number of wifi points
    • 06:14 – For a single venue, the price is $13 a month
    • 06:22 – Purple WiFi also caters to stadiums and airports
    • 06:45 – An airport can average a hundred access points
  • 07:10 - Purple WiFi currently has 17K installations
    • 07:15 – It ranges from restaurants up to a whole city
    • 07:53 – They now have around 80K access points
  • 08:03 – Average MRR is close to a million
  • 08:25 – Purple WiFi offers discount for bigger venues
  • 09:00 – Sales cycle varies every hour
  • 09:19 – A physical venue owner is usually clueless about what is happening in the venue
  • 09:50 - Purple WiFi is channel-based and sells through partners
    • 09:55 – Some of the partners are Telstra and Singtel and other national carriers
  • 10:23 – Team size is over 100
    • 10:30 – 45 are focused on sales and partnerships
  • 10:46 – Telcos are usually built with partners
    • 11:09 – They can build their own access points but it takes years and a huge investment
  • 11:40 – Purple WiFi partners with half of the service providers in the USA
  • 12:37 – Purple WiFi partners with Cisco and Ruckus for the access points
  • 13:06 - Purple WiFi does post visit reviews which prompt the user to review the coffee shop or hotel
    • 13:19 – There was around 500 increase in TripAdvisor reviews
    • 13:21 – 600-700% increase in CRM generation
    • 13:28 – The value of Purple Wifi can be seen from day 1
  • 13:43 - Purple WiFi was launched in 2013
  • 13:48 – First year revenue was $200K
  • 13:59 – 2014 revenue was around $600K
  • 14:13 - Purple WiFi consistently grows over 100% year over year
  • 14:34 – 2017 target revenue
  • 14:48 – Gross margin is 80%
    • 14:59 – One of the challenges is the location and the huge number of data
  • 15:35 - Purple WiFi is processing around 500K data from all of their access points in a day
  • 15:50 – Purple WiFi has net negative churn and gross customer churn is 12% yearly
  • 17:00 – LTV is around 10 years
    • 17:10 – Most enterprise customers are signing 3-5 years with an upfront payment
  • 17:33 - Purple WiFi has raised $13M
    • 17:51 – The costs usually go to engineering and sales
    • 18:07 - Purple WiFi spends on event sponsorship too
    • 18:24 – They track the events prior to sponsorship
    • 18:50 – Payback period is around 12 months
    • 19:25 – Average CAC
  • 19:39 - Purple WiFi is headquartered in Manchester, UK and US office is in Austin, Texas
  • 20:26 - Purple WiFi is tremendously valuable for conferences
  • 23:04 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Public wifi solutions are becoming more and more of a necessity especially for establishments and events.
  2. Having your own wifi solution allows you to gather data more than you could otherwise.
  3. Study your business before starting 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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 11, 2017

Tomer Levy. He’s the CEO and co-founder of Logz.io. Before co-founding Logz, he co-founded and was the CTO of Intigua, a company that innovated locker-like containers designed for large enterprises. Prior to Intigua, Tomer spent 6 years at Check Point, where he led its intrusion prevention system product from concept to market. He has an MBA for Tel Avi University, a BA in Computer Science, and is an enthusiastic kite surfer.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Hard Thing About Hard Things
  • What CEO do you follow? – Jeff Bezos
  • Favorite online tool? — Grammarly
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 6-7
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “Take it easy, you’ll figure it out”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:20 – Nathan introduces Tomer to the show
  • 02:06 – Logz is a logins company
    • 02:12 – Some of their customers are Kantar Media and British Airways
    • 02:30 – Logz solves systematic problems in web servers and databases
  • 02:41 – Logz is a SaaS business
  • 02:52 – Logz caters to IT operations and security team of a company
  • 03:24 – You can subscribe to Logz’ website directly and pay monthly
  • 03:29 – Logz has 2 main cohorts
    • 03:32 – SMBs would pay around $10-15K a year
    • 03:41 – SMEs would usually pay annually that can grow to hundreds of thousands
  • 03:58 – Average pay is $10K-40K in annual contract value
  • 04:10 – Logz was launched in 2014 and the product end of 2015
  • 04:30 – Logz has an inside sales team
  • 04:38 – Logz offers an open source platform like ELK which is around $500K a month
    • 04:58 – Instead of libraries, ELK will be installed in the servers and take all the data
    • 05:12 – ELK visualizes the data and Logz offer ELK with more capabilities
  • 05:27 – Logz is based on the open-source community
  • 05:55 – Logz isn’t the developer of the open source
    • 06:05 – Logz built a solution on top of the open source for log management
    • 06:30 – ELK is like google search for all of your log data
  • 07:02 – There are also other companies who are doing open SaaS
    • 07:10 – Pantheon for WordPress and similar with Cloudera are doing open SaaS too
    • 07:38 – Github just recently offered Git open source as a service
  • 08:03 – Tomer has been writing content even before the launch of the company
  • 08:14 – Logz is number for ELK search and they contribute the most in the open source community
  • 08:43 – Open source has to be good and easy enough to get started so it will have mass distribution
    • 08:51 – But it has to get to a point that it is difficult to scale and make it production grade
  • 09:04 – Logz currently has a thousand companies on board
    • 09:17 – Some are paid customers and some are on free
  • 09:35 – Logz has raised money but they could have built a lifestyle business
    • 09:52 – Logz raised $24M and the last round was $15.6M in October 2016
  • 10:07 – Team size is 70
  • 10:54 – Logz started in October 2014 and ran their first product by February 2015
  • 11:05 – Logz started with 5 non-paying customers after shifting to paid model
  • 11:38 – As your company grow, people will realizes your company’s value and be willing to pay for it
  • 11:49 – Logz has 0 revenue in 2014 and 2015 revenue was around 6 figures
  • 12:44 – Logz has already broken a million dollar runway
  • 13:02 – Logz competes mostly with engineers setting up their own open source
  • 13:10 – The commercial side, Logz competes with AWS or Amazon Web Services
  • 13:45 – Gross margin
  • 14:12 – Logz pays $1-5M to Amazon for hosting
  • 15:20 – Minimum MRR
  • 15:46 – Team is based in Telavi, Israel
    • 15:59 – Logz also has a team in Boston where Tomer currently is
  • 16:11 – Gross monthly customer churn
  • 17:07 – “We’re very much a land and expand business”
  • 17:43 – Marketing team has 8 or 9 people and 7 sales people
  • 18:10 – Fully weighted CAC
  • 18:40 – Payback period
  • 19:22 – Logz also invest in paid marketing with around $5k a month
    • 19:50 – Logz invests massively in events this year
    • 20:23 – Logz spends a few hundreds of dollars in sponsorships
  • 22:17 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. When thinking about a business model, try and create on that is “land and expand”.
  2. Starting as a free service is fine, but you need to make sure you’re built to offer your customers more value behind the paywall.
  3. Great content coupled with great keywords builds great companies.

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 10, 2017

Derric Haynie. He’s the CEO of Vulpine Interactive, a social media marketing agency that helps build contagious brand and passionate fans. Nathan met Derris at Los Angeles when they were at Sean Ellis’ Growth Hacking event. Derris has an interesting story that goes from poker to social media to speaking, blogging, growth and digital marketing.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – They Ask You Answer
  • What CEO do you follow? – Neil Patel
  • Favorite online tool? — Queue
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 8-9
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “I wished that I have been able to pursue business earlier and give up poker earlier”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:51 – Derric believes that his agency will grow and exist on its own
  • 02:02 – The peak of poker for Derric was in 2009-10 when he was 24
    • 02:21 – Derric was making mid 6 figures and working 3 hours a day doing poker
    • 03:00 – Derric had a lot of great mentors in poker
    • 03:19 – Those that are better than Derric are really geniuses
    • 03:27 – Derris started to feel his personal boundaries
    • 03:57 – Derric knows that he’ll never be the grand master in poker
    • 04:02 – The best player in poker takes all the money
  • 04:55 – Derric didn’t pay himself for the first year and a half of his agency
    • 05:03 – It was in 2014
  • 05:22 – Derric got funding in 2015 of a total of $150k from his poker friends
  • 06:06 – Derric was telling himself that he’s not focused on revenue but on learning and finding the opportunities
    • 06:34 – Derric spent around $25K attending conferences and events
  • 07:19 – Derris’ wife is his co-founder and they started paying themselves just last year
    • 07:28 – They now make $5000 a month
  • 07:51 – Derric and his wife are trying to structure a company for growth and scalability
  • 08:10 – Vulpine now has 2 part-time employees
  • 08:50 – Raising a child cost Derric around $3000 a month
  • 09:06 – Derric had a lavish life that he gave up
    • 09:31 – Derric has sold a lot of things
  • 10:28 – Team size is 4
  • 10:37 – Typical customers for Vulpine are ecommerce and SaaS businesses
    • 10:48 –They also have to be thought leaders with a willingness to create great content
  • 11:00 – Vulpine is good at repurposing great content and content should be originally from the company
  • 11:21 – 2016 revenue is around $70-80K
  • 11:41 – Check agency/transparency to see their financial score sheet
  • 11:57 – Target MRR is $100K by December 2017
  • 12:07 – If they don’t hit $50K MRR by December, they will stop the company
  • 12:32 – Average contract size is $2K a month with 3 months minimum
    • 13:56 – Derric has been advised too that the contract should be at least for a year
    • 14:21 – Derric was thinking of the best value that he can provide for his client when he decided on the 3-month minimum
    • 14:36 – Derric believes that if he can’t consistently deliver month over month, he should be fired
  • 15:12 – Derric currently has 14 customers with some pro bono
  • 17:27 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Poker may bring more money than your business, but sometimes it’s not about money.
  2. At a certain point in your life, you have to give up things that you’re used to and learn something new.
  3. In business (especially pricing) always have a market study and comparison first, or ask for advice.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 9, 2017

Hal Howard, 20-year Microsoft veteran who gave up a stable, secure position leading the Dynamics ERP development team to satiate a spark of creativity. Today, he’s the founder of Komiko, a sales intelligence tool that helps their businesses understand what engagement with customers is working.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Execution
  • What CEO do you follow? – Satya Nadella
  • Favorite online tool? — Vinfolio
  • 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? – “Don’t worry man. Everything’s going to work out just fine”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:45 – Komiko is a sales intelligence tool that helps their businesses understand what engagement with customers is working
    • 02:12 – Komiko is integrated with different sources
    • 02:20 – A cloud-based subscription-based model
  • 02:37 – Hal was at Microsoft for 20 years
    • 02:59 – left Microsoft because he wanted to build something new
    • 03:16 – “There are still unexplored technologies around business applications”
  • 03:54 – Customer pays an average of $30-35 a month per user
    • 04:00 – Team size ranges from 3 to 500
    • 04:11 – There are currently 2000 paying seats across 50 businesses in total
  • 04:33 – Average MRR is $60K
  • 05:19 – Team size is 10
    • 05:37 – 8 are engineers
  • 05:48 – Hal and his co-founder are doing both sales and product engineering
    • 06:00 – Hal is more on the design
  • 06:30 – Komiko is now a complimentary CRM
    • 06:38 – Partnered with Salesforce and most of their customers are using Salesforce
  • 07:19 – CRM is in a different decision set compared to Komiko
    • 07:40 – Komiko works with corporate clients to help them understand what engagement works and what doesn’t
  • 07:59 – “We don’t lose customers”
    • 08:05 – In Komiko’s lifetime, they’ve only lost 4 customers so far, 1 was acquired
  • 08:28 – CAC is mostly inbound and Komiko was listed in AppExchange
    • 08:44 – Hal and his co-founder alone were able to drive a lot of customers, mostly from referrals and the businesses they’ve worked with before
    • 08:51 – Just started an outbound campaign in early 2017
    • 08:59 – Has a partnership with GameSite
      • 09:20 – GameSite’s focus is how customers engage with the product
      • 09:35 – GameSite is building a platform for customer success and Komiko’s metric will help the overall customer solution
    • 09:48 – Komiko raised some capital
      • 10:03 – Total fund raised is around $2M
      • 10:23 – Initial round was convertible note and then the seed round is priced round
    • 10:37 – 2017 revenue target is at least a million dollars
    • 11:04 – 2016 revenue is $15K
    • 11:23 – Gross margin is around 75%
    • 12:09 – Hal won’t easily sell Komiko, but he might consider for at least $25M
    • 14:43 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Nurture the network that you have, it will always help you in some way down the road.
  2. You have the option leave your comfort zone, you can explore and create something new.
  3. It’s possible to not lose customer IF you consistently help the customers see value in 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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 8, 2017

Jose Cayasso. He’s a growth hacker, co-founder and CEO of Slidebean, 500 Startups alumni, and a frequent flyer miles hoarder.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Lean Startup and Traction
  • What CEO do you follow? – Josh Pigford
  • Favorite online tool? — Amy@X.ai
  • 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? – Jose would tell himself that he had to quit his day job and create something for himself earlier

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:38 – Slidebean has an office in New York City and Costa Rica
  • 01:56 – Slidebean is a web-based tool for making presentations
    • 02:00 – Slidebean focuses on making presentation more efficient
    • 02:20 – Slidebean is a subscription service
  • 02:26 – Most of Slidebean’s customers are previous PowerPoint users
  • 02:38 – Team plans start at $49 a month
    • 02:52 – A single presentation service is also available
  • 03:00 – Most of the revenue are from the recurring model
  • 03:14 – Jose started Slidebean in 2014
    • 03:25 – Originally, it was focused on end users
  • 03:40 – Slidebean shifted to businesses that are doing presentations monthly
  • 03:58 – Churn went down from 15% to negative churn in revenue
  • 04:15 – Gross customer churn is currently at 3.5%
  • 04:42 – Jose tried different measures for Slidebean to improve the churn rate
    • 05:09 – They changed the business model while keeping the subscription and premium value
  • 05:28 – Slidebean caters to 2500 paying customers
  • 05:45 – Average MRR is around $120K
  • 06:06 – Jose is originally from Costa Rica and he’s not a fan of outsourcing
    • 06:14 – “I still believe that office collaboration is the best”
    • 06:38 – There’s a lot of talent in Costa Rica
  • 08:07 – Team size is 22
  • 08:17 – Slidebean has raised a small seed round
    • 08:22 – “We’re in the break of profitability”
  • 08:25 – Slidebean is burning around $25K a month
  • 08:43 – Slidebean has raised a total of $850K on a seed round
  • 09:08 – CAC is around $150
    • 09:15 – It’s quite low because Slidebean competes in SEO
    • 09:22 – Prezi is one of Slidebean’s competition
    • 09:35 – Slidebean targets keywords through AdWords
  • 09:56 – LTV is around $1000 or 18 months
  • 10:39 – Total marketing cost is around $25K-35K including head count cost
  • 11:17 – Gross margin is around 75-80%
  • 11:53 – 2017 target revenue is $2M
    • 12:03 – They don’t need to raise more money at the moment
  • 13:00 – 2016 ARR is around $750K
  • 15:25 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. A shift in business model can allow your company to grow while still retaining its value and growth.
  2. Find the right keywords for your business and use AdWords to target them, it can help lower your CAC.
  3. The earlier you create something for yourself in life, the better.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 7, 2017

Jessica Lee. Nathan met Jessica a few months ago and Jessica toured Nathan in 500 Startups’ office in San Francisco. She’s the founder of Bitesize. She helps companies drive revenue with text message conversations.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – #GIRLBOSS
  • What CEO do you follow? – Sophia Amoruso
  • Favorite online tool? — Trello
  • 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? – “Everybody has the same kind of challenges and overcoming them is the REAL WORK

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:37 – HandStack and Bitesize are the same company
  • 01:49 – Bitesize helps brands drive revenue through interactive text messaging
  • 02:00 – A new movie studio has a new movie and wants to reach a million movie goers
    • 02:10 – Bitesize will reach people by text message
    • 02:20 – The messages will be from a movie character and the approach is interactive
    • 02:42 – Bitesize will drive the person to a download link at the end of the conversation
  • 03:01 – Building a list for text is the challenge for Bitesize
  • 03:25 – Bitesize uses manual texting tool
    • 03:40 – There’s a law that’s protecting consumers where you can’t randomly message people with algorithms or without human intervention
    • 03:56 – Bitesize helps client send text with manual human intervention
  • 04:27 – Jessica shares how an actual message happens
    • 04:30 – The company will create a group chat, add people, and click send manually
    • 04:39 – People’s reply will go to your app and you can continue to interact with them
  • 05:08 – The difference with the usual group text and from Bitesize is, you don’t get to see other people’s messages
  • 05:34 – Bitesize charges per text and data
    • 05:42 – Per text charge is .25₵
  • 06:11 – Most of Bitesize’s costs is from data
    • 06:16 – Twilio is at .02₵
    • 06:45 – Data charges can go up to .16₵
  • 06:58 – BiteSize’s clients pay them for their marketing skills too
  • 07:15 – For a thousand new messages, an average of 6% will reply which a lot higher than social media ads
  • 07:45 – A lot of Bitesize’s customers will send millions of texts
  • 08:13 – Revenue is measured by campaigns: 140 for the last 6 months
  • 08:41 – Bitesize has raised $125K from 500 Startups
  • 08:56 – Team size is 6
    • 09:03 – 3 in the bay area and 3 elsewhere
  • 09:26 – Average MRR
  • 09:58 – 50% of the campaigns are paying quarterly and some campaigns are daily
    • 10:20 – Each campaign pays an average of $10K to $100K for the .25₵ per text messages
  • 10:43 – 10% of Bitesize’s customers are from referrals
    • 10:50 – Initially, Bitesize was focused on outbound sales
    • 11:08 – “Because our product was so unique, people like to know what it is”
  • 11:38 – Bitesize originally started with political campaigns
    • 11:49 – Because of Jessica’s background, most campaigns are for the democrats
  • 12:29 – Jessica believes that Bitesize is a tool that is meant to connect people in a more meaningful way than ads
  • 13:05 – 2013 revenue is around $250
  • 13:17 – 2016 revenue is $300K for 6 months
    • 13:30 – They pivoted to a more commercial use case in the final 6 months
  • 13:40 – 2017 target
  • 13:59 – “My hope is to grow organically”
  • 16:05 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Texts can be very spammy but if done right, the return is better than with online ads.
  2. Messages should connect people in a more meaningful way.
  3. Growing organically is cheaper, and it creates more resonance, but it’s harder to do.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 6, 2017

Bo Jiang. He’s the co-founder and CEO of Privacy.com, a new way to transact online without showing your credit card number or pin. He previously worked on mobile products with Hatch Labs, which is the venture studio that incubated Tinder and Pixie TV, which was acquired by Samsung. He holds a BS in Mathematics in MIT.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – High Output Management and Who
  • What CEO do you follow? – Charlie Munger
  • Favorite online tool? — Zoom
  • 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? – “Pay attention and see things through”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:34 – Bo has always been interested with Bitcoin and Krypto frequency where the idea of Privacy came from
  • 01:56 – Privacy was a side project in Bitcoin
  • 02:00 – Bo didn’t pay anything for Privacy
    • 02:10 – Bo retained the domain as an investment for the company
  • 02:51 – Bo shares how he made the deal of using the domain for free
    • 03:10 – Domains are assets but the value won’t grow that much
    • 03:28 – Bo gave the domain owner less than 10% of the company
  • 03;40 – Privacy has a browser extension and mobile app
    • 03:44 – It allows you to create unique card number for every purchase you make online with just one click
    • 04:00 – You can use any name or details and set your own credit limit
    • 04:20 – It’s actually a debit card which can be linked to your checking account
  • 04:30 – Currently, there’s nothing that is completely unhackable
    • 04:42 – Privacy takes the best practices and security measures to ensure the client’s security
    • 05:25 – The cards from Privacy can’t be use anywhere else
  • 05:38 – Privacy makes money from interchange
    • 05:43 – Every time that there’s a transaction using a card, the merchant pays Visa, Visa shares the fee with the bank, and the bank shares the fee with Privacy
  • 05:56 – If Nathan uses $100 on an Amazon checkout, Privacy will get around 1%
  • 06:51 – Privacy has raised $3.5M
  • 06:59 – Transaction volume is how Privacy’s revenue grow
  • 07:10 – Privacy is more focused on how much people have saved from using them
  • 08:06 – Privacy was founded in 2014 and was launched as a beta first, a year ago
  • 08:30 – Privacy currently has 150K users
  • 09:15 – Privacy is growing in double digits, month over month in transaction volume
    • 09:23 – Privacy has already broken a million transactions in just a month
  • 09:50 – Team size is 10 based in New York City with some in Florida and Oregon
  • 10:16 – Bo is still thinking of Privacy having a premium feature
  • 10:31 – Average MRR is around $10K
  • 10:57 – Bo was inside of Hatch Labs
    • 11:20 – Bo thinks that Tinder work because it was the right product at the right time
    • 11:55 – Hatch Labs was a venture studio and had 10-20 projects at a time
  • 12:41 – What IC puts in every project in Hatch Labs depends on the project
  • 13:06 – Bo left Hatch Labs a year and a half ago
  • 15:14 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. While online shopping is becoming more of a necessity, online security can still be questionable so having an alternative to paying with a credit card is something people are looking for.
  2. Focus on your company’s mission and the rest will follow.
  3. Don’t overestimate or underestimate things – see through them.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 5, 2017

Amanda Newman. When she was 26 and working as a relator in Liberty, Toronto, she created a website for local deals, events, and news. Soon, other realtors were approaching her about the website, and she realized it had the potential spread all across North America. Today, Park Bench, her company, has grown from a fun little marketing idea to help a struggling realtor, into a multi-million-dollar company with 27 employees and a rapid growth rate.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – DotCom Secrets
  • What CEO do you follow? – Gary Vaynerchuk
  • Favorite online tool? — DocuSign
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 7-9
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “To start writing down my goals”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:54 – Amanda was in episode 353 of The Top
  • 02:11 – In 2016, Amanda was doing $80K in MRR
    • 02:16 - $4500 from upfront payment
    • 02:25 – They build neighborhood focused website for real estate agents
  • 03:07 – Amanda had 215 customers in 2016 with $880K revenue in 2015
    • 03:15 – Each customer is paying $350 a month with a total of $70K MRR
    • 03:20 – 5% churn, CAC of $400 and LTV of 20 months
    • 03:26 - $7000 LTV with 8 people in the team
    • 03:31- Founded in 2014
  • 03:38 - Park Bench builds neighborhood websites
    • 03:40 – They have the technology that aggregates local content
    • 03:46 – They sell the exclusive rights to the neighborhood sites which are run by 1 real estate agent per neighborhood
    • 03:53 - Park Bench provides training and guidance on how to use the website and leverage it
    • 04:05 – “They become a conductor of their community”
  • 04:18 - Park Bench currently over 1000 customers
  • 04:46 – They invested a lot on Facebook advertising
  • 05:00 - Park Bench gets 60-100 realtor inquiries who want to be the digital mayor of their neighborhood
  • 05:10 - Park Bench has 3000 sq. ft. office with 30 employees
  • 05:16 – In May, Park Bench hit $628K in revenue which is their biggest month by far
    • 05:38 – It’s the total revenue
  • 05:38 – Last month, Park Bench sold to 150 realtors who have paid upfront of $4500-5000
  • 05:57 – Churn is now 2.75% with 65-70% renewal rate
    • 07:18 - $628K May revenue divided by $5000 to get 126 customers
    • 07:38 – 75 existing customers and 50 new customers
  • 09:00 – CAC is $676 and LTV is around $13K or 3 years
  • 09:51 – Currently, Amanda isn’t sure where to spend their money so they’re investing more on Facebook ads
    • 09:58 – They track the leads they get daily
    • 10:16 – The Facebook algorithm is making it more expensive now to get new customers
    • 10:25 – They invest more on content and wanted to drive more organic traffic
    • 10:40 – They spend $6500 on ads monthly
  • 11:02 – “We’re just growing our business”
  • 11:23 – On personal wealth creation, Amanda only thinks of being happy
    • 11:37 – “I don’t have to raise money, I don’t have to sell the company”
    • 11:40 – Amanda loves her team and enjoys being a part of it
  • 12:15 – Gross margin is over 90%
  • 12:45 – The investment deal should be strategic and can be from, like Keller Williams, for Amanda to accept it
    • 13:00 – Amanda wants to access to more real estate agents
  • 13:41 - Park Bench has country managers who work with clients whenever they need to
  • 13:54 - Park Bench is starting to offer realtors other things they need like in marketing
    • 14:02 - Park Bench knows lead generation too
  • 14:30 – Amanda’s parents sold their company to invest in real estate
  • 14:50 – Amanda is still thinking if she will invest in real estate too
  • 15:04 – “At this point, our best return is to invest in ourselves”
  • 15:27 – Amanda’s dad has a foundation and is currently in Kenya
  • 18:02 – The Famous Five
  • 20:46 – $1.9M 2016 revenue
  • 20:53 – 2017 target revenue is $6.3M and currently on track

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Have a reliable support system that will make your customers be stickier.
  2. With Facebook’s ever changing algorithms, it’s better to invest more on creating great content to drive more organic traffic and leads.
  3. Write down your goals so you can keep track of them.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 4, 2017

Todd Johnson, a serial healthcare information technology entrepreneur committed to building great products, teams and companies. Todd has a track record of cultivating great ideas and great business that offer incredible company cultures and attention-grabbing brands. Before his current company, HealthLoop, Todd was the founder and CEO of Salar, a Baltimore, MD-based provider of acute care physician charge capture and documentation solutions. 

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The E-Myth Revisited
  • What CEO do you follow? – Donald Trump and Elon Musk
  • Favorite online tool? — Gmail, Boomerang and Inbox
  • 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? – Todd wished he could have took things less seriously

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:59 – Everyone needs healthcare at some point in their life
  • 02:30 – Salar was able to replace paper processes at hospitals
    • 03:08 – Salar was sold to the country’s second largest medical transcription company
    • 03:16 – It was a $15M exit
  • 03:40 – Todd lives in Silicon Valley
    • 03:57 – Todd has a couple of reasons why he chose to rent rather than to buy a property
  • 04:37 – HealthLoop was initiated in 2009 and was an idea for over a year
  • 04:51 – Todd joined HealthLoop in 2013
  • 04:49 – The founder is a doctor from San Francisco
    • 05:50 – He’s still part of the board
  • 06:28 – HealthLoop is a platform that automatically pushes notifications before and after a diagnosis or surgery
    • 06:40 – It connects patients and doctors
  • 07:00 – 5 years ago, there’s no model around improving the quality of care
  • 07:38 – Multiple parties benefit from an improvement in health care
  • 08:28 – In order to retain the trust of the patients, you have to gain the doctor’s trust as well
  • 08:46 – HealthLoop has an enterprise subscription model
    • 09:03 – Average contract is $120K to $150K that can escalate year over year
    • 09:21 – They pre-pay the cases that they might have in a year
  • 10:28 – HealthLoop’s customers are very targeted
  • 10:35 – The expansion per area depends on how the incentive shakes out
  • 10:50 – HealthLoop is currently working with 70 groups and 20 hospitals
  • 11:13 – HealthLoop has an older subscription model which some of their existing clients have
  • 11:30 – HealthLoop has raised $21M
    • 11:44 – HealthLoop is in an attractive space for competition
    • 12:20 – They have 90% annual retention
  • 12:43 – The institutional mindset
  • 13:08 – Team size is 40
    • 13:18 – 8 are in the sales team
  • 13:53 – HealthLoop’s current enterprise sales cycle is around 6-7 months on a 120 ACV
  • 14:16 – CAC is quite high
    • 14:55 – There are many competing organizations in the market
  • 15:34 – LTV will depend per organization
  • 16:07 – Todd is seeing a 150% growth from last year in terms of ARR
  • 16:38 – There’s so much unpredictability in the space which can be a bad thing
  • 17:31 – Hospitals need to be thoughtful about spending cash
  • 17:49 – HealthLoop will spend more on adapting to a new management
  • 18:17 – HealthLoop’s gross margin is around 70%
  • 20:33 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. There’s not enough consumer tech that is solely dedicated to healthcare.
  2. At least once in our lifetime, we will need healthcare, and the ability to have a quick, back-and-forth communication with your health provider is powerful.
  3. Because of the aging baby boomer population, healthcare is an incredibly attractive space for investors right now.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 3, 2017

Chau Nguyen. He’s the founder and CEO of Hirewire, an on-demand hiring app for hourly workers. In his previous venture, Chau hired over 20K people only to realize his hiring process was broken—and that’s when he got the idea for Hirewire. To date, Chau has raised $4.1M in funding.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Good to Great
  • What CEO do you follow? – Elon Musk
  • 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? – “There is no replacement for hard work”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:14 – Nathan introduces Chau to the show
  • 01:47 – Chau’s previous venture was Campus Special
    • 01:50 – It’s an online platform for college students
    • 02:00 – They had 4K sales representatives meeting merchants
    • 02:11 – Chau had Campus Special for 8.5 years before selling to a public company a few years back
    • 02:28 – Chau was 25 when he launched Campus Special and he’s 36 now
    • 02:47 – Campus Special was doing $15M in revenue when he sold it for $25M
    • 03:45 – The negotiation was just about what the buyers would pay for it
    • 03:55 – It was bittersweet for Chau to sell Campus Special but still proud of it
    • 04:27 – Chau owned 100% of Campus Special
  • 05:00 – Chau stayed on board with the acquirer for a year
  • 05:30 – Chau thought that he can use his past experience in hiring
  • 06:15 – With Hirewire, Chau saw the need to invest heavily on the product and technology, hence the fund raise
    • 06:29 – Initial raised was $2M and the next round was $2M as well
    • 06:36 – Both rounds are convertible note
  • 06:47 – Hirewire is a marketplace where employers and job seekers can connect
    • 06:52 – It is a mobile app to speed up the process
    • 07:00 – There’s chatting with images and videos
    • 07:06 – Next release will be focused on on-demand hiring
    • 07:25 – Hirewire has a monthly subscription for employers and free for applicants
    • 08:10 – Hirewire has a pay as you go model for small businesses
    • 08:20 – The monthly subscription is usually for big companies like McDonalds
    • 08:40 – Hirewire’s core customer based are the recurring customers
    • 08:48 – Hirewire focuses on the restaurant industry which has the highest turnover
    • 09:08 – Hirewire charges per location per month, starting at $50 to $100 depending on usage
  • 09:53 – Hirewire was first launched in Atlanta and was on beta for year
    • 10:00 – They launched with nothing
    • 10:24 – In one year, Hirewire got 4K employers to sign up, over 100K job seekers with around 1K people hired
  • 10:56 – Hirewire has 2 drivers that allowed them to grow quickly
    • 11:00 – First is hitting a pain point
    • 11:44 – Second is doing the application online
  • 12:14 – Hirewire is in 4K locations with 5K hiring managers
    • 12:30 – Some locations can have at least 2 hiring managers
  • 12:40 – Average MRR is a little over 200K
    • 13:06 – Hirewire has been and is still testing pricing
  • 13:31 – Gross customer churn
    • 13:40 – A restaurant’s churn could be 100-200% like losing an entire team
    • 13:56 – Prior to launch, Chau was really afraid of what will happen but still think that they make the hiring process easier and faster
    • 14:19 – Ultimately, people will stay where they’re happy and making money
    • 14:31 – Hirewire is retaining 95% of the employees which makes the churn 5%
  • 14:50 – Team size is around 15 based in Atlanta
  • 15:07 – Hirewire does paid acquisition
    • 15:17 – 50% of the job seekers are from organic traffic
    • 15:23 – Hirewire also uses social media channels to drive users and has spends $10-25K monthly
  • 15:54 – Freightos has a marketplace model plus SaaS
  • 16:38 – Chau’s goal for Hirewire is to be very sticky with high retention on the employer side
  • 17:19 – Hirewire is not making money on the marketplace aspect and just on the SaaS aspect
  • 19:10 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. You can’t stay at where you are forever, change is constant so move on and start anew.
  2. Leverage what you’ve learned in the past to create something that can refine the system.
  3. Always test your product first.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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
Aug 2, 2017

Mathilde Collin. She’s the CEO of Front, a SaaS company working on redesigning email for teams. She started with Y Combinator in the summer of 2014, and today has 20 employees and 1700 customers.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Zero to One
  • What CEO do you follow? – Patrick Collison
  • Favorite online tool? — Slack
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 8 and a half
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “People that are struggling should be super motivated because that’s what everyone go through”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:04 – Nathan introduces Mathilde to the show
  • 01:33 – Mathilde was in Episode 413 of The Top
    • 01:43 – Back then, they had 1200 customers, $13M raised, around a million in revenue in 2015
    • 01:53 – An average customer pays 200 a month leading to an MRR of $240K
    • 01:58 – Gross churn was 3%
  • 02:10 – Front now has 40 team members
  • 02:13 – “We tripled our revenue”
  • 02:15 – The number of customers didn’t triple because they had bigger companies using Front
  • 02:43 – Current MRR is around $750K
  • 03:02 – Front still has 80% of what they’ve raised last year
    • 03:13 – Total capital raised was $14M
  • 03:45 – Front is burning $250K a month
    • 03:50 – Mostly from head count
  • 04:29 – Churn has always been low
    • 04:35 – Net churn has always been negative which -10% monthly
    • 04:50 – User churn is around 3.5 - 4%
    • 05:04 – MRR churn is low
  • 05:30 – The teams that are paying Front more per month tend to be very sticky
  • 06:10 – Gross margin is 88%
  • 06:22 – Front APP is the easiest way to manage a shared inbox as a team
    • 06:29 – A sample of shared inbox is support@contact or a social media account
    • 06:37 – Front simplifies everything in one place
  • 06:54 – For Front’s growth, they lend it and extend it
    • 07:00 – Net negative churn is coming from existing customers
    • 07:04 – Existing customers have been upgraded to new plans or added teams
    • 07:10 – HubSpot started with 1 team and now they have 13 teams with Front
    • 07:26 – Front now has a marketing team with 3 people
    • 07:35 – Front has now done more advertising and content
    • 07:41 – The most effective for Front is AdWords
  • 07:52 – Monthly CAC is around $15K
    • 08:03 – Front tracks sales qualified leads
    • 08:26 – It takes 7 trials to get 1 new paying customer
  • 08:38 – After the trial, the customer will be categorized as an enterprise or SMB and mid-market companies
    • 08:50 – The goal is for the sales people to get the trial set up
    • 09:02 – The sales cycle is 3 weeks
    • 09:20 – 95% of the customer is going through 3 weeks than the offered 2 weeks
  • 09:26 – People are using Front than Slack because Slack is usually for before synchronous communication
    • 09:34 – Front is for a synchronous communication
    • 09:40 – A synchronous is every communication that is done externally should have an upfront
    • 09:49 – Slack messages can also be distracting with the team
  • 10:13 – Front competes more with Intercom than with Slack
  • 10:25 – Intercom is usually better for customer communication while Front is for general communication
  • 10:43 – Front is an email client
  • 11:40 – Customers are buying Front to replace email
  • 12:12 – Mathilde won’t sell Front now even for $95M
    • 12:25 – “I think I will sell when I’m not as confident as today”
    • 12:37 – Front makes Mathilde happy
  • 13:04 – Mathilde is now 28
  • 13:15 – Front was launched in early 2015
  • 13:29 – Mathilde wanted people to be happy at work so she made Front
  • 15:07 – Mathilde has always been happy and confident that they can do a series B
    • 15:56 - “I do have some inbound”
  • 16:30 – Mathilde was part of an article in Entrepreneur.com
  • 19:10 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Growth can be measured by several different metrics—the important thing isn’t the metric, it’s the important thing is consistency.
  2. Stay with what makes you and other people happy.
  3. People love reliability—if you can deliver that in a product or service you’re on to something.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Aug 1, 2017

Mariano Suarez-Battan. He’s the founder and CEO of MURAL, a digital whiteboard for exploring complex challenges visually. Global 2000 companies like IBM, Intuit, Steelcase, and Autodesk have deployed MURAL at scale to enhance collaboration in their digital workplace. A former startup in residence at IDEO, Mariano also founded Three Melons, a game studio that designed and published online games like Bola, which was acquired by Playdom and Disney in 2010.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Purple Cow
  • What CEO do you follow? – Aaron Lewis
  • Favorite online tool? — LinkedIn
  • 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? – To trust in your gut always

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 02:12 – Bola has created games for large brands like Lego
  • 02:23 – Back then, the social games industry was moving fast with Zynga, Playfirst and Playdom
    • 02:31 – Mariano thought that, strategically, it made sense to grow bigger with those companies
    • 02:45 – It was also a great decision, financially and professionally
  • 03:00 – Mariano started Bola in Argentina
  • 03:24 – Acquisition price was with stock and equity
    • 04:12 – The cash was $4-5M
    • 04:26 – $600K was the payback for the investors
  • 04:44 – MURAL was a startup in residence in IDEO
    • 05:03 – IDEO brought in Collaborative Fund as a funder for MURAL
    • 05:10 – MURAL’s vision is to make every designer share their design thinking globally
    • 05:36 – IDEO was like an incubator
    • 05:49 – Prior to IDEO, MURAL has raised closed to $1M
    • 05:59 – Collaborative Fund invested money on MURAL while IDEO made MURAL known to big companies like IBM
    • 06:33 – Some of IDEO’s DNA are in MURAL
  • 07:00 – MURAL’s pricing
    • 07:02 – $12 per member per month and billed annually, $16 billed monthly
    • 07:10 – The pricing on the website is for online customers
  • 07:23 – A quarter of their customers are online and the rest are enterprise costumers
  • 07:46 – MURAL is a SaaS business
  • 08:22 – MURAL has over 40K active users monthly
  • 08:58 – MURAL has no free plan but has introduced a free education plan to help kids
  • 11:00 – MRR is around $280K
  • 11:11 – Average ARR
  • 12:06 – Currently, MURAL has raised a total of $2.4M
  • 12:16 – Team size is 35
    • 12:45 – Most are in product development and engineering
    • 12:55 – Office is located in San Francisco
  • 13:30 – Gross monthly churn
  • 14:17 – Some of the customers are entrepreneurs selling to multiple departments
  • 15:23 – MURAL churn on online customers is quite high
  • 15:38 – Average cost per new customer
    • 15:55 – One of MURAL’s new customer is from an event they’ve sponsored
    • 16:04 – The cost of the sponsorship with other expenses was $3K
    • 16:29 – What Mariano does is split up general cost with the number of new customers
  • 16:50 – Gross margin is around 85%
  • 18:45 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. The investment in your company doesn’t always need to be cash.
  2. Before going into an acquisition or partnership, go on a vacation and think about it with a clear head.
  3. Having different revenue sources leads to different churn sources—focus on where churn is the least.

 

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
  • GetLatka - Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • 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

Jul 31, 2017

Patrick Bosworth. They launched in 2012 with 3 co-founders and are now at 105 people. They help hotels—specifically, they help hotel locations better optimize their pricing. They raised $51 million serving over 3000 individual hotel locations paying on average 17 grand per year. They will very soon be doing about a $50 million run rate, 75% gross margin which they tripled over the recent future. This is incredible how they worked that fixed cause structure to drive more growth and bring the margin up over time. They spend about $20,000 on CAC; so there is a super healthy payback period at about 14 months. They are based in San Francisco and Las Vegas.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Crossing the Chasm
  • What CEO do you follow? – Matthew Prince
  • Favorite online tool? — Gnome
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— trying to get 8, but is getting 7 hours
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – I wish that I had believed that it was okay for me to be happy back then

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Patrick Bosworth to the show
  • 01:23 – Patrick is the co-founder and CEO of Duetto Research, his focus is driving vision and growth at a company
  • 01:50 – Patrick thinks his MBA from Harvard is crucial in the building of the company; a friend of Patrick’s convinced him of the opportunity to build a tech business and introduced him to co-founder Craig Weissman, who was at Sales Force at the time
  • 02:15 – In the fundraising process, his MBA created credibility as well as his co-founder’s MBA from Cornell. Another co-founder also went to Harvard and they were all able to maximize their networks
  • 03:01 – Patrick did the two-year program and it helped him get a grounding in business terminology considering his background was in the arts and in politics
  • 03:37 – If the network is the main concern, there are short term programs, but they are expensive
  • 04:02 – Nathan says he is willing to spend money for people who enter the program to get access to the network
  • 04:23 – Duetto is a hotel software company leveraging on medium data to help hotel managers make smarter decisions on pricing optimization
  • 04:47 – Duetto gets the demand from a particular hotel and picks the price for each customer segment, channel and room type for the next 13 months
  • 04:57 – This has increased the revenue of the hotels from 6.5 to 8.5% which increases their profit from 75 to 100%
  • 05:15 – Duetto gets revenue from the subscription payment that is paid annually based on the product they are buying and number of rooms in the hotel
  • 05:42 – Patrick is surprised that companies are not taking advantage of the performance kicker
  • 06:41 – Last month, 5% of the revenue came from the flat SaaS model
  • 07:10 – The target customer varies – if it is a strong brand like the Marriott, they need to go directly to them rather than the real estate owner; in smaller brands including independent hotels, they need to go to the management company
  • 08:32 – On a per property basis, they are getting $17,000 to $18,000 per hotel per year and it varies according to the number of rooms and products they are buying
  • 08:50 – The company was founded in 2012
  • 09:17 – Patrick and Marco worked on the business idea for about a year and met with Craig in September 2011; it took them 5 months to court him
  • 09:52 – While Patrick and Marco were fundraising, they were only getting $1 - $2 million valuations but when Craig joined, it jumped up to $10 million
  • 10:49 – Craig has more equity than Patrick
  • 10:58 – They have raised four rounds of capital amounting to $58.3 million
  • 11:33 – The payback period is 14 months and they are spending around $20,000 to acquire new customers
  • 11:51 – They have literally not lost a customer in 5 years
  • 12:55 – Selling to the lodging market is difficult because it is an old school industry that does not embrace technology quickly
  • 13:17 – The company tried to spend more on additional sales reps or demand gen but the cash got spent inefficiently
  • 14:12 – Duetto can grow by expanding their reach geographically
  • 14:31 – By the end of the quarter, they are close to 3000 hotels in 98 countries
  • 15:04 – There is a lag in gross and deferred bookings, but the current run rate is a fraction of Nathan’s calculation of $50 million
  • 16:10 – The company has a larger services organization than most and they grew from 30% to 70% gross margin in the past year
  • 17:06 – They staffed up sales globally and the services organization with the platform growth margin north of 95%, but the blended gross margin including the onboarding services dips down in the 70s
  • 18:26 – They had a fixed cost structure
  • 18:41 – Patrick says they did spend a million bucks a month during the early years and it was partly due to naiveté
  • 19:56 – The investors have big expectations and they were the ones that reassured Patrick of the capital and growth
  • 20:34 – In the last round in 2015, they were able to raise $30 million
  • 21:55 – The investors changed their mindset in 2015 and in 2017
  • 22:06 – They currently have 105 people based in San Francisco and Las Vegas
  • 23:14 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. An MBA degree can give you a leg up in terms of the network it provides you.
  2. Know your market well, including all its idiosyncrasies.
  3. Study the changes in your investors’ expectations and work with them.

 

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

Jul 30, 2017

Sunil Thomas. He’s had a ton of experience working in tech companies and decided in 2013 to take the plunge himself and go all in with his 2 co-founders. They’ve since raised a total of $9.6 million – $1.6 million seed and $8 million in series A. They launched revenue in 2016, broke $1.5 million in total sales and this May 2017, broke $400,000 in MRR out of about $5 million ARR. He wants to double that by the end of the year, amounting to $800,000. They have a team of 45 based between California, New York and India—again, making it easier for mobile applications to understand what the heck users are doing in their apps.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Play Bigger
  • What CEO do you follow? – Satya Nadella of Microsoft
  • Favorite online tool? — Slack
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 7-8 hours
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – I wish I knew as much as my kids knew at 13, I had no clue what I was doing at 20

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:44 – Nathan introduces Sunil Thomas to the show
  • 01:32 – Sunil Thomas is the co-founder and CEO of CleverTap
  • 01:46 – CleverTap combines people-based analytics with user engagement, it can be used in your mobile app and website and you get to understand what they are doing
  • 02:23 – It is like a combination of Mix Panel plus App Boy for mobile apps and websites
  • 03:17 – The average customer pays them $2500 – $3000 a month based on event data
  • 03:37 – The top cohorts pay $10,000 to $20,000 a month
  • 04:21 – CleverTap is one of the few companies that has both Accel and Sequoia as their funders and they have raised a total of $9.6 million dollars with a seed of $1.6 million and $8 million in series A
  • 05:18 – CleverTap started in 2013 and has 3 co-founders—Suyin has had various work experiences in the tech industry
  • 05:56 – CleverTap came about because of the need to engage users
  • 06:47 – Nathan says there are only a limited number of apps a person engages with on a daily basis
    • 07:02 – Sunil says their business is targeted on the companies and not the consumers
    • 07:28 – There are more than 10,000 apps that go into the app stores every day
    • 07:53 – The pricing starts at $1000 a month
  • 08:23 – An average monthly active user does 15 to 20 events in your app
  • 08:54 – They currently have 200 paying customers and 2000 apps that are sending them live data
  • 09:13 – A plan of the company is to cover 10 million events a month for their free plan in 3 years
  • 09:31 – The conversion rate is 30% for those who are using the free plan to a paid plan
  • 09:44 – Nathan computes the revenue is at least $400,000 a month
  • 10:05 – In terms of competition, there are three sets of apps: apps that get app data for sales, attribution provider apps and the one about user engagement and app analytics where CleverTap is
  • 11:19 – Their growth churn is very low with everyone on the less than 1,000 plan who are still sticking around
  • 11:51 – The company started to monetize just a year ago and has a 400,000 growth rate
  • 12:15 – They have 45 people globally – 11 are in the US and 32 are in India with the core engineering team in India
  • 13:10 – To acquire new customers, they have marketing qualified leads from websites and they hit bigger accounts on the outbound, focusing on direct sales rather than marketing and advertising
  • 14:41 – The biggest expense is in the hosting
  • 15:18 – It was hard during the early days, but it has now come to a point where they are benefitting
  • 15:55 – In 2016, they broke $1.5 million in revenue and are targeting to get to $10 million by the end of the year
  • 17:04 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Look for a need and fill the gap in today’s current technology.
  2. Know your target market well!
  3. You may start slowly at first, but it will pay off in the end.

 

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

Jul 29, 2017

Keegan Peterson. Keegan is a technology entrepreneur blazing a trail in the legal cannabis industry. He has worked for many software and services companies. He founded Wurk which helps cannabis businesses pay their employees while adhering to the Federal and State Regulations. Keegan is also a former division one athlete from Florida Atlantic University.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Stealing Fire
  • What CEO do you follow? – Elon Musk
  • Favorite online tool? — Asana
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 5 to 6 hours
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “I wish I would have started something earlier in my lifetime”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:19 – Nathan introduces Keegan to the show
  • 01:53 – Cannabis is a fascinating industry that is a great place for technology to play a big part in it
  • 02:31 – For a year, Keegan financed Wurk but they’ve now raised $3M from venture capital (VC)
  • 03:09 – Cannabis businesses include growing, selling, and extracting the plant
  • 03:29 – “Marijuana” and “Weed” have a negative stigma, unlike “Cannabis”
  • 03:46 – Wurk makes profit by selling a service to their clients
  • 03:56 – Wurk ensures cannabis businesses’ taxes are paid correctly and calculated correctly
  • 04:33 – Payroll companies being backed by national banks cannot touch cash made from cannabis
  • 04:54 – Wurk is a SaaS company and is in 17 legal cannabis states
  • 05:17 – They sell their services directly to business owners
  • 05:30 – They have hundreds of users on their platform
  • 05:39 – Keegan launched Wurk 2 years ago, in August 2015
  • 06:10 – They currently have 18 employees in 3 offices
  • 06:28 – It’s NOT a requirement to smoke cannabis to work for Wurk
  • 06:40 – They do look for people who believe in cannabis as a progressing industry
  • 07:13 – Wurk provides a whole difference face to the industry
  • 07:30 – “We are not the traditional cannabis business”
  • 07:45 – A large portion of Wurk’s clients are in cannabis, but there are some clients that are not
  • 08:12 – Most business owners in the business pay their employees in cash
  • 08:27 – “We’re trying to help solve that issue”
  • 08:42 – The average client payment per month ranges from $10 to $30
  • 09:03 – Number of employees and number of states the business is in are factors in a client’s metrics that determine how much they pay to Wurk
  • 09:55 – Wurk doesn’t charge per customer; they charge per employee
  • 11:00 – They don’t have a lot of competition
  • 11:16 – They have a low churn of 2 customers in 2 years
  • 11:41 – Currently, they don’t have an average Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) because they mostly get referrals
  • 12:01 – They have 5 full-time sales reps with 1 chief revenue officer and other employees are on implementation
  • 12:18 – Their sales reps earn through salaries and incentives
  • 13:40 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. There are still industries that are not saturated.
  2. If there’s hole in an industry, there’s a market for a business that can fill that hole.
  3. Referrals or word of mouth is still one of the best ways to get a customer.

 

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

Jul 28, 2017

Tye Schlegelmilch to the show. Tye is the founder of Hinged following a 16-year career in finance, and most recently as co-CIO for Fortress Investment Group which has about 70B assets in their management. Prior to that, Tye was with a variety of different finance firms including Goldman Sachs.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Snowball
  • What CEO do you follow? – Jeff Bezos
  • Favorite online tool? — Skype and GoToMeeting
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 5 to 6 hours
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “I wish I’ve been more measured with certain things in my life”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:08 – Nathan introduces Tye to the show
  • 01:48 – Tye has a lot of friends who entered the entrepreneurial space
  • 01:58 – As an engineer, he’s always been curious about how he can make things work better
  • 02:13 – He moved out to Connecticut and bought a house
  • 02:17 – Tye saw an opportunity in being able to get things done, understanding what needed to be done, and when it needed to be done in a home
  • 02:37 – Diving into entrepreneurship was just a result of his curiosity
  • 02:55 – Hinged is a holistic online platform for homeowners to better understand, manage, and control all aspects of home ownership
  • 03:43 – Hinged’s business model is providing a full software solution for the service providers
  • 04:05 – Hinged is highly selective with who they want (service providers) on their platform
  • 04:20 – They take 5% of the revenue that goes through the platform to the provider that’s providing the maintenance or repair
  • 04:39 – Hinged is a marketplace
  • 05:23 – They have several hundred homeowners on the platform
  • 05:43 – Across Fairfield and Westchester Country, they have a few hundred service providers in 50 different categories
  • 06:57 – On an average user basis, there are 20%-40% who have spent money on the platform
  • 07:31 – Hinged launched in Feb 2017
  • 08:32 – Appliance repairs are the hottest category on their platform
  • 09:40 – The average price of services done on Hinged is about $1500
  • 10:19 – Tye funded everything on Hinged
  • 10:54 – Internally, they just discussed capital-raising
  • 11:13 – The industry Hinged is in is a “land-grab” so they’re looking into raising capital to expand
  • 11:47 – Today there are 5 full-time employees and a development team from Cogniance
  • 12:48 – They started with a sales team for service providers
  • 13:02 – Teams are continuing to ramp on Hinged
  • 13:35 – Hinged was very well thought out before Tye put money into it
  • 14:05 – Tye’s salary in finance ranged from back office administration to major league baseball players
  • 16:06 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. There will always be better ways to do things—keep on brainstorming.
  2. Don’t hold yourself back from your own curiosity.
  3. Be selective with who you work with; this will affect the quality of 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

Jul 27, 2017

Zvi Schreiber, founder and CEO of Freightos – the internet marketplace for the trillion-dollar international freight industry. Zvi was previously the CEO for Lightech which was acquired by G.E., and was also the founder and CEO of Unicorn Solutions which was acquired by IBM. Additionally, Zvi was the founder of G.ho.st, a predecessor of DropBox, which ended in a fire sale. He’s spoken widely and was in many articles and patents. He has a PhD in Computer Science and he’s the author of Fizz: Nothing Is as It Seems, which tells the history of physics as a novel.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Crossing the Chasm
  • What CEO do you follow? – Jeff Bezos
  • Favorite online tool? — Mixmax
  • How many hours of sleep do you get? — 7 hours
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “It’s okay for startups to take on a big conservative industry”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:08 – Nathan introduces Zvi to the show
  • 02:23 – Freightos is targeting the world of international freight
  • 02:45 – 90% of the products sold in the West are imported – the entire lifestyle is dependent on international freight
  • 03:18 – The biggest cost components in the freight industry is the trucking, ocean liners, port handling, and airlines
  • 04:38 – “This big industry is very inefficient”
  • 04:52 – Asking for a quote from a big freight forwarding company can take about 3 days
  • 05:45 – Freightos is the “Expedia” for freight
  • 06:09 – Freightos makes money by taking a cut of the transaction
  • 06:24 – They basically do the marketing for the seller
  • 06:40 – Freight forwarders are companies that arrange freight like Expeditors and H. Robinson
  • 06:59 – Some more known forwarders are UPS and FedEx
  • 07:24 – The buyers in this marketplace are the import/export companies
  • 08:46 – Freightos helps with importing/exporting and not door-to-door deliveries
  • 09:15 – Freightos only takes 2% from the freight forwarders’ transactions
  • 09:35 – They don’t take any percentage from the buyer’s end
  • 10:02 – Many freight forwarders are using Freightos’ software to automate their own pricing
  • 10:23 – Freightos is a SaaS business
  • 10:33 – They’ve recently raised $25M from an investment round led by G.E.
  • 11:21 – In 2016, 90% of their revenue came from SaaS because they’ve just launched the marketplace that year
  • 11:35 – Without the SaaS, freight forwarders are not able to do instant pricing
  • 11:54 – The SaaS platform is serving about 1,000 freight forwarders all around the world
  • 12:04 – Freightos is the market leader for the SaaS
  • 12:22 – There are only a few thousand freight forwarders that matter and Freightos has 1,000 of them as customers
  • 12:35 – January 2012 was the launch date of Freightos
  • 12:43 – Freightos’ team size is about 150 people across the world
  • 13:17 – Every shipment involves 2 countries
  • 13:26 – Their biggest office is in Jerusalem and Barcelona
  • 14:07 – Their customers pay less than $1K/month to tens of thousands per month for the subscription
  • 14:43 – The reason why most marketplace startups fail is because of the chicken-and-egg problem
  • 15:06 – Freightos spent 4 years selling SaaS to companies
  • 15:40 – Freightos’ first year revenue was 0
  • 15:45 – Their first revenue came in 2013
  • 16:25 – It was in 2015 when Freightos earned their first million
  • 16:56 – Each month, there are about several hundreds to a thousand transactions in their marketplace
  • 17:33 – Freightos is starting to educate freight forwarders and importers/exporters that they don’t need to wait anymore for pricing
  • 18:16 – There are thousands of buyers already using their software
  • 20:03 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Our lifestyle is heavily dependent on imported goods.
  2. Find an industry’s pain point and start from there.
  3. Don’t be afraid to create a startup in a big and conservative industry.

 

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

Jul 26, 2017

Stephen Stuut. He’s the CEO of Jumio.com. He brings more than 25 years of experience fueling corporate growth and leading technology businesses. Before Jumio, he served as a CEO of TruePosition, a leader in location-based service technology. Prior to that, he was a president and CEO of Broadband Innovations delivering digital interactivity services to cable TV providers. During his 10 years, he has raised over $30M in equity from venture capital firms and strategic investors and ultimately sold the company to Motorola in December of 2005.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – A Book from McKinsey
  • What CEO do you follow? – John Mallone and Greg Maffei
  • Favorite online tool? — Outlook
  • 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? – “Travel just a little bit less when your kids are young”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:28 – Nathan introduces Stephen to the show
  • 02:10 – Jumio is a SaaS business, particularly, trusted identity as a service
    • 02:18 – Jumio does identity verification and document verification
    • 02:35 – Jumio will validate the ID, making sure it isn’t fraudulent
    • 02:40 – Jumio does biometric facial comparisons from the selfie picture and ID picture for identity verification
  • 03:11 – Jumio’s customers are merchants who need to know the identity of a person
  • 03:19 – Airbnb is one of Jumio’s customers
  • 03:29 – Jumio caters to airlines, bitcoin companies and banks that have money-laundering requirements
  • 04:13 – “The world is moving to the internet online clamors”
  • 04:17 – Walking into a building and flashing your ID is quite inconvenient
  • 04:58 – Some, like Nathan, don’t bother to change their license ID even if it’s unrecognizable
  • 05:35 – Customers typically pay 1 year worth of transactions in advance
  • 05:49 – Average contract price
  • 07:17 – Stephen isn’t the founder but is a CEO who came in later
  • 07:23 – The founder started Jumio after he argued with a credit card about his identification
  • 08:15 – Jumio was founded in 2014 and Stephen came in 2 years after they launched
  • 08:32 – Stephen was brought in by the investors
  • 08:48 – Jumio has raised $60M to date
  • 09:14 – Jumio just broke in 150K identity verifications in a single day
  • 10:02 – The investors of Jumio
  • 10:48 – Jumio has processed 26M verifications in 2016
  • 10:55 – 2017 verification number
  • 11:21 – The team in 2015 was around 90 and now it’s around 110 in the west and a thousand in India
  • 12:01 – Jumio is a hybrid blend of computer vision, facial recognition and human integration into one
  • 12:27 – Stephen is an optical engineer and has designed laser weapons
  • 13:14 – Jumio is well-known in the fintech and economy space
  • 13:25 – Jumio has a sales force direct with a team of around 20
  • 13:50 – Jumio does trade shows in the marketplace
  • 14:28 – Jumio has the top 4 unicorns as customers
  • 15:34 – Different markets have different value that they see from the pricing activity
  • 16:51 – “This is very much a grab the market share and its transactions”
  • 17:40 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. It’s a relief to know that verifying your identification can be easily done.
  2. Pricing value affects different markets greatly.
  3. Spend more time with your kids while they’re young.

 

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

Jul 25, 2017

Paul Walsh. He’s the founder and CEO of MetaCert, the world’s most-established security company in team collaboration and messaging services. He’s a holder of a full-patent for inept URL security. His first company generated $2.2M in Year 1 and he’s also the owner of a Michelin Star Indian restaurant.

Famous Five:

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:11 – Nathan introduces Paul to the show
  • 02:03 – Team collaboration and messaging services is only a few years old from a vertical perspective
  • 02:34 – MetaCert’s security is focused on the premise that people are using like apps
  • 02:51 – MetaCert’s security is put right into the service and is very specific in their niche
  • 03:10 – In only takes seconds to install MetaCert
    • 03:20 – Before you open a website, MetaCert checks if it is safe
    • 03:31 – MetaCert has a database of classified URLs
    • 03:34 – If the website is safe, nothing will happen
    • 03:55 – If the website isn’t safe, you’ll receive a notification before the site loads
  • 04:19 – MetaCert has their own security protocols to make sure that their database isn’t compromised
  • 04:31 – MetaCert is probably the only small business that has its own threat intelligence system
  • 04:56 – MetaCert has the biggest database of classified URLs
  • 05:12 – Some of their customers are IBM and UCLA
  • 05:25 – Paul believes that even if a user isn’t a paying one, he should be called a customer
    • 05:35 – “We treat them with the same dignity”
  • 06:04 – MetaCert has a good product market fit
  • 06:15 – Most of MetaCert’s customers have started to pay
  • 06:31 – MetaCert has a great dashboard that has an interface with every link and file shared with the company
  • 07:11 – Less than 5% of the users are paying
  • 07:20 – MetaCert turned down the payment system
  • 07:52 – MetaCert had supported themselves through funding with a total of $2.4M
    • 08:17 – Paul has thought about what series A investors look for
    • 08:34 – It’s difficult for a SaaS B2B business to decide on the conversion metric
    • 09:04 – MetaCert has been monitoring data
    • 09:36 – MetaCert is installed in every channel for every customer—which is a privacy risk, but customers still do it
    • 10:08 – A big company won’t just install a free product
    • 10:15 – Paul has talked with their customers and ask their feedback on MetaCert
  • 10:59 – Every customer that installed MetaCert has looked into the pricing
    • 11:17 – There’s an expectation of paying after the 7-day trial
  • 11:28 – MetaCert is a SaaS model
  • 11:30 – Pricing starts at $1.50 per user per month
    • 12:11 – The average customer is a company with 350 users
    • 12:25 – $500-600 per month is the average starting point per company
  • 12:38 – Around 1200 customers have installed MetaCert through Slack and Hipchat
    • 12:44 – With zero inbound and outbound marketing
    • 13:00 – Most traffic comes from Slack and Hipchat
    • 13:14 – MetaCert didn’t negotiate with Slack and Hipchat
    • 13:21 – Hipchat has blogged about MetaCert
  • 14:43 – There’s a lot of people who don’t care about security, but there are those who still do
  • 15:04 – Most IT people are more concerned about insider threats than external hacks
  • 15:50 – Paul turned on their revenue for a number of reasons
  • 16:30 – Moving from customers to users
  • 16:57 – Building the platform took Paul a significant amount of years with continued tweaking
  • 17:10 – Paul’s reason why he didn’t turn on the revenue initially
  • 17:46 – Paul has built a great relationship with their customers
  • 17:51 – A lot of security companies are using MetaCert
  • 18:09 – Nathan wants to understand how Paul can build a big business out of MetaCert
  • 19:08 – Paul believes that before charging their customers, there should be a product fit which Nathan disagrees
  • 21:15 – Paul defines product fit
  • 22:50 – The market opportunity
  • 23:18 – MetaCert has become the most-established in the space
  • 23:39 – MetaCert has all the right tools in place
  • 24:43 – “You just don’t jump to revenue”
  • 25:00 – Nathan has seen some of the most successful B2B SaaS business that had prepay, then get validation for the business
  • 26:14 – Paul, on the other hand, believes that it’s rare for a customer to agree to prepay without trying a product
  • 28:12 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. The definition of users and customers won’t always be the same for each company.
  2. Knowing your product fit before charging customers will help your customers see the value of your product right away.
  3. Being secure online has becoming a necessity to many because there are more inside threats.

 

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

Jul 24, 2017

Cam Miller and Akin Onal, the founders of MORI/BabyMori.com. Cam is the chief growth officer and co-founder at MORI. He is responsible for building out their essential babies’ brand and the creative use of marketing and technology. This summer, he represented the brand as one of the 500 startups at Mountain View Accelerator. Prior to MORI, he studied an MBA at London Business School, had various roles in Australia, France and the UK, and studied engineering business development finance and event management.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Lean Startup (Cam)
  • Most recent read book –  Bhagavad Gita
  • Favorite online tool? — Slack (Akin)
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— 7-7/5 (Akin)
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “I wish I got into entrepreneurship a bit sooner”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:08 – Nathan introduces Cam and Akin to the show
  • 01:47 – Cam and Akin met at JP Morgan
  • 02:12 – There are a lot similarities between what they were doing at JP Morgan and what they are doing now
  • 02:19 – MORI is a direct-to-consumer business model
  • 02:33 – MORI has over 10K customers over 50 countries acquiring 1000 additional customers per month
  • 02:57 – The non-subscription model is what MORI have on most countries
  • 03:05 – MORI has really high repeat orders per month
  • 03:13 – MORI is looking to relaunch a new and improved subscription model
  • 03:31 – The sleeping bag has been their bestseller for the last 6 months
  • 03:51 – A repurchase is when the same customer buys the same item, but a bigger size
  • 04:35 – Half of the revenue per month comes from repeat customers
  • 05:15 – The sweet spot on sales for repeat customers ends around 2-2.5 y/o
  • 05:45 – Average cart price is $100
  • 06:26 – MORI uses Klaviyo and MailChimp for their upsell
  • 07:21 – The website’s product recommendation is manual
  • 08:35 – 2016 topline sales was around $500K
  • 09:00 – 2017 goal is $4M topline
  • 10:03 – Cam and Akin have pivoted over 1 and half years
  • 10:09 – MORI had a subscription model before the e-commerce
  • 10:24 – After launching the latest collection in an ecommerce platform, sales went up
  • 11:32 – The subscription is only for a specific product
  • 13:20 – A repeat customer is the one who goes to the site to buy again
  • 13:33 – The subscription model is almost phased out
  • 14:22 – A lot of the products on the site are bundled, but they’re not part of the subscription
  • 14:45 – The customer cohort of MORI outgrows them
  • 15:53 – Paid acquisition last month was $50K
    • 16:14 – They’ve recently launched a retargeting program
  • 17:00 – MORI just closed a $2M round which was an equity round
  • 17:28 – LTV
  • 18:14 – LTV is measured on the growth trade and not on revenue
  • 18:31 – Pre-money valuation
  • 19:45 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. The right model for your business can be proven by an increase of revenue.
  2. Keep in mind that your revenue growth is NOT the only basis of your LTV.
  3. Start entrepreneurship as early as possible.

 

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

Jul 23, 2017

David Dunne. He’s the CEO and co-founder of Velocidi, a marketing intelligence company that harnesses data for leading brands and agencies. In the 7 years since founding Velocidi, it enables marketers to make data-driven decisions that optimize marketing spend. David is currently leading the firm’s next chapter into artificial intelligence.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Selling the Invisible
  • What CEO do you follow? – Richard Branson
  • Favorite online tool? — Tidal
  • 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? – “Hurry up, things are changing fast, you have to move faster”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:07 – Nathan introduces David to the show
  • 01:41 – Velocidi focuses on how AI can speed up insights
  • 01:48 – Velocidi’s technology has always been enabling the process of analysts driving the insights
  • 02:22 – The analysts are Velocidi’s customers
  • 02:39 – Velocidi is a SaaS business selling licenses
  • 03:01 – Pricing starts at $3K a month
  • 03:23 – Average monthly RPU is around $6K
  • 03:44 – Velocidi charges by the amount of data streams
  • 04:20 – Velocidi uses API calls to bring in the data
  • 04:42 – Velocidi was launched in 2010
  • 05:19 – There are people who are with David in building Velocidi
  • 05:44 – David was a part of a global business
  • 06:11 – David was happy with Edelman, but he wanted to reinvent himself
  • 07:46 – David was 43 when he started Velocidi
  • 09:26 – Every entrepreneur takes risks
  • 09:51 – David has always separated personal assets with work
  • 10:15 – Velocidi was capital intensive for the first few years
  • 10:56 – Velocidi has initially raised $3M from friends and families
  • 11:01 – Velocidi just closed a $12M round
  • 11:18 – David has ambitious plans for growing the business
  • 11:49 – More capital allows you to have more options
  • 12:10 – CAC
  • 12:21 – Most of Velocidi’s customers are large global agencies
  • 12:31 – Velocidi is expanding into other industries
  • 13:45 – LTV to CAC ratio
  • 13:58 – David tries to look at some of the classic businesses for comparison
  • 15:19 – Velocidi focuses on what they can give to customers
  • 16:04 – Velocidi keeps their customers for at least 5 years
  • 16:54 – Some of Velocidi’s customers have thousands of customers and there’s a lot of room to grow
  • 17:39 – Velocidi is innovating their product at a much faster rate
  • 17:55 – The innovations depend on the customer's’ needs
  • 18:21 – Velocidi is expanding their automated self-serve platform this year
  • 18:40 – Velocidi has hundreds of customers
  • 19:19 – Self-service means different things
  • 20:08 – Analysts have been using excel and powerpoint
  • 20:42 – Velocidi delivers the core-data and the clients tailor the data
  • 21:11 – The quality of the data alongside a creative makes Velocidi’s clients standout
    • 23:01 – David believes that data with creative is a better creative
  • 23:55 – Average MRR
  • 25:36 – David won’t sell Velocidi
  • 26:53 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Entrepreneurs will always take risk—what matters is how big of a risk you’re willing to take.
  2. Focus on what you CAN commit to your customers.
  3. Things change faster than you think; so KEEP moving and don’t get left behind!

 

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

Jul 22, 2017

Aaron Klein. His career has largely been in the intersection of finance and technology. As co-founder and CEO at Riskalyze, he led the company twice to being one of The World’s Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Finance by Fast Company Magazine. Today, over 150 riskalyzers served thousands of advisors. Aaron has served as a Sierra College trustee and in his spare time, co-founded a school project for orphans and vulnerable kids in Ethiopia. Investment News has honored him as one of the industry’s 40 Under 40 executives.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Extreme Ownership
  • What CEO do you follow? – Ben Horowitz
  • Favorite online tool? — Twitter, Evernote and Uber
  • 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? – “The most important skill that you will ever have in starting a company is making great hiring decisions”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:15 – Nathan introduces Aaron to the show
  • 02:07 – Riskalyze’s mission is to empower the world to invest fiercely
  • 02:20 – An average consumer struggles to invest and understand the concept of investing
  • 02:39 – Warren Buffett said “Stock for the one thing the American consumer refuses to buy when they were at their cheapest and only wants to buy at their most expensive”
  • 02:48 – Riskalyze invented risk numbers that they can create for short-term
    • 03:06 – Riskalyze’s focuses on the short term
    • 03:43 – The harm usually comes from short-term decisions
  • 03:58 – Riskalyze needs a context to understand how to make a good short-term decision
  • 04:11 – Investors who don’t use Riskalyze would normally ask if the 2% down on their portfolio is still okay
    • 04:18 – 8% of that portfolio is actually normal
  • 04:56 – “We tend to stereotype people based on their age”
    • 05:12 – The typical questions in the industry would often base on the age of the investor
  • 05:41 – Riskalyze has a team of academics who delve into the data and methodology behind the risk number
  • 06:00 – Riskalyze’s technology helps the advisor assess how much risk they can handle in a quantitative-objective way
  • 06:27 – Riskalyze works with financial advisors and helps their investors become more successful
  • 06:45 – Riskalyze is a SaaS business
  • 06:48 – Riskalyze is launching their auto-pilot platform
  • 07:19 – Pricing starts at $145 a month
  • 07:36 – Riskalyze was launched in 2011
  • 07:41 – Prior to Riskalyze, Aaron was in a brokerage firm and saw firsthand how poorly average investors thought about risk
  • 07:54 – Aaron told his financial advisor friend about the risk and they founded Riskalyze
    • 08:07 – Equity was 50/50 at first
    • 08:27 – They’ve raised and brought in investors along the way
  • 09:03 – Investors have seen a good return of up to 10X
  • 09:48 – Riskalyze is currently focused on going to financial advisors first
  • 09:59 – Riskalyze was capital efficient
  • 10:02 – First round of funding was around $420K all equity
  • 10:23 – Riskalyze is a substantial business and their ARR was a multiple of the capital deployed
  • 10:40 – Total funds raised to date is $24M
  • 11:10 – Team size is 175 from 90 last October
  • 11:24 – Based in Auburn, California
  • 12:21 – Riskalyze currently serves 19K advisors
    • 12:25 – There’s no free plan
  • 12:42 – Advisors are known to be money efficient
  • 12:59 – Riskalyze tried a free version
    • 13:23 – The plan was originally $99 a month
    • 13:40 – After they tested to push the price up, their conversion rate tripled
  • 14:10 – Gross annual churn
  • 14:32 – Riskalyze typically loses an advisor to retirement or death
    • 14:48 – Riskalyze found a solution for retirement
  • 15:33 – Aaron doesn’t have the number for their net expansion RPU yet
    • 15:50 – Riskalyze rolled out their advisor product in March 2013
    • 15:53 – Then, they went into hyper-growth mode, from 380 customers to 2000
    • 16:24 – They lost track of the data with only 4 people
  • 16:50 – Cost to acquire new customers
  • 17:10 – LTV
  • 18:00 – Nathan recommends Klipfolio as a dashboard for Aaron
  • 18:15 – Aaron rolled out a premier tier of Riskalyze in February which is $225
  • 19:18 – Average MRR
  • 21:30 – Aaron shares why Warren Buffett recommends investing in Vanguard
    • 21:31 – Vanguard fits the people who are in their 70s and 80s
  • 22:04 – Buffett also said that going to an advisor isn’t necessary
  • 22:18 – Aaron believes that Vanguard should still be a part of a person’s portfolio; but what about someone who is a risk 45 and Vanguard is a risk 78?
  • 24:45 – Nathan never went to an advisor as he found them fishy
  • 25:15 – Aaron doesn’t have any financial advisors at the moment but he will in 2-3 years
    • 25:20 – Aaron believes that an advisor can help him maximize the money that he has for the future
    • 26:08 – The reason to use an advisor
    • 26:32 – Riskalyze wants people to get risk aligned with the risk they can handle
  • 26:48 – Advisor charges a flat fee based on the investor’s asset
  • 27:34 – The value of human vice
  • 29:14 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. If an average consumer knows his risk number, he will be more confident to invest.
  2. An advisor will not only help you manage your money, but show you how you can grow it.
  3. Focus on your hiring—this will contribute to a fast-growing company.

 

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

Jul 21, 2017

Andrew Fischer. He’s a seasoned entrepreneur with extensive business development and sales experience in digital media and enterprise software or SaaS. He’s recently launched Choozle, a simple and digital marketing platform in the fall of 2012. Based in Denver, Colorado, Choozle is the world’s fastest growing digital advertising platform.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Hard Thing About Hard Things
  • What CEO do you follow? – Jeff Green
  • Favorite online tool? — Evernote
  • 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? – “I will probably reinforce the message of focus”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:04 – Nathan introduces Andrew to the show
  • 01:35 – Choozle is the fastest growing digital advertising platform because of Inc Magazine’s annual ranking
    • 01:45 – It will be Choozle’s first year in Inc
  • 02:02 – Choozle became profitable last year
  • 02:16 – Choozle was launched in 2012
  • 02:25 – Revenue is between $5-10M
  • 02:29 – Team size is around 32
  • 02:36 – Choozle raised a small round
  • 02:54 – Choozle is a SaaS that installs on an agency level
  • 03:07 – The lowest level of subscription is $99 for an agency with one client and up to $2K a month for unlimited accounts
  • 03:21 – Average pay per customer is $300 a month
  • 03:25 – Choozle has 250 clients
  • 03:30 – Choozle offers hybrid-managed services
  • 03:51 – Choozle is also an ad-tech company, so they take a percentage of media
  • 04:03 – Media shares start at 40%
  • 04:17 – Choozle is a premium player in the space
  • 04:53 – 2016 revenue
  • 05:00 – 2017 target revenue
  • 05:34 – Majority of Choozle’s revenue are coming from Q3 and Q4
  • 05:51 – Choozle has raised $8.5M to date
  • 06:02 – Choozle’s grace capital is from non-traditional services like a family office
  • 06:29 – The goal when they had a raise was to build a sustainable company
    • 06:51 – The raise was an equity-based investment
  • 07:02 – Average churn is 5-7% per month
  • 08:03 – Andrew is currently happy with their churn rate
  • 08:32 – LTV to be
  • 08:52 – CAC
  • 09:22 – Average payback period
  • 09:34 – Choozle has 10 full-time salespeople, total team size is around 30
  • 11:25 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. The digital advertising space is quite saturated and the churn rate of a SaaS businesses is quite high.
  2. Aim for your company to not just be profitable, but sustainable as well.
  3. Don’t limit who you allow as investors in your company.

 

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

Jul 20, 2017

Heather Marie. She’s the founder and CEO of Shoppable, a technology company that helps media companies, brands and retailers bring the checkout experience to anywhere a consumer discovers or engages with their products. While with Shoppable, she won the 2013 Women in Digital Award from L’Oreal, was named 1 of the 10 Most Powerful Millennials in Manhattan by Gotham Magazine, and 1 of the 11 Tech Gurus Changing the Luxury Game by Refinery29. The company was a 2014 Webby Award Honoree for Online Shopping, a 2016 Webby Honoree for Technical Achievement and named one of the 100 Brilliant Companies by Entrepreneur Magazine.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Never Eat Alone
  • What CEO do you follow? – Jennifer Hyman
  • Favorite online tool? — Boomerang for Gmail
  • 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? – “Just how long everything takes”

 

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:07 – Nathan introduces Heather to the show
  • 02:07 – Shoppable creates a technology that helps people buy what they see online
  • 02:37 – People see products in every place
  • 02:50 – Shoppable created a patent pending technology that provides different locations to shop that is outside the traditional retail shop
  • 03:20 – Heather started the company in 2011
  • 03:36 – Heather pitched Shoppable to a number of different retailers
  • 03:49 – Shoppable launched a technology with The Wall Street Journal
  • 04:00 – The Wall Street Journal branding was able to bring in a bunch of retailers and advertisers
  • 04:40 – Shoppable has grown to under 30M products across the whole platform
  • 05:28 – Shoppable brings the technology to where the consumers already are
  • 05:40 – com uses Shoppable on their website and customers can buy directly from the website
  • 07:24 – Shoppable brings the technology to different types of companies
  • 07:40 – Shoppable is also integrated with publications such as WSJ, Condé Nast and others
  • 07:58 – Shoppable is a SaaS company and charges annually for licenses
  • 08:20 – Average customer pay is 5 figures
  • 09:11 – Prior to Shoppable, Heather was at post acquisition of com
  • 09:26 – Heather was a founding member of Affinity Labs
  • 10:21 – Heather got into Affinity right after college
  • 10:39 – The exit with Monster was all cash with an additional incentive
  • 10:49 – Heather made it for 2 years after the acquisition, doing research on Shoppable
  • 11:45 – Heather had to make Shoppable work
  • 12:01 – Heather knew that she would start her own company
  • 12:21 – Heather had debt that she was able to pay off after the acquisition
  • 12:55 – Heather kept a part of the money for Shoppable
  • 13:40 – Heather also had to downsize her condo to keep her expenses low
  • 15:13 – There are ways you can increase your buffer
  • 15:33 – Heather had to change her habits
  • 16:22 – Shoppable has raised $5M
  • 16:33 – The last round was a year ago
  • 16:43 – Heather isn’t selling to Shopify
  • 16:55 – Shoppable is above breaking even
  • 17:24 – Team size is 20 and they are all based in New York
  • 17:53 – Heather went on a business trip to NY and on her second day, she thought that Shoppable was made for NY
  • 18:31 – Shoppable has around 438 merchants and 2000 brands
  • 18:38 – One merchant could have hundreds of brands
  • 19:15 – Average ARR
  • 21:13 – The Famous Five

 

3 Key Points:

  1. As an entrepreneur, you need to know how to manage money well.
  2. Building a company requires research and an action plan—especially if that company is your first and last shot at building one.
  3. Be aware that things in business and in life may take longer that what you’re expecting.

 

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
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