In Episode #265 Nathan interviews Anand Kulkarni, co-founder of LeadGenius. Anand left his job as a researcher and teacher at Berkeley to develop a tool that uses automation technology to find effective sales leads. Listen as Nathan and Anand talk over starting an SaaS business and exactly how to run an effective fundraising round.
- Favorite Book? – Only The Paranoid Survive
- What CEO do you follow? — Elon Musk
- What is your favorite online tool? — Gmail
- Do you get 8 hours of sleep?— Yes
- If you could let your 20 year old self know one thing, what would it be? —I wish I had known how much fun it is to start a company – I would have started sooner!
Update from Anand:
Time Stamped Show Notes:
- 01:22 – Nathan’s introduction
- 01:54 – Welcoming Anand to the show
- 02:10 – LeadGenius is AI for sales – ‘top of the funnel automation’
- 02:45 – One client is using it to map out every IT director in every Brazilian telecom company, and obtain their contact details
- 03:30 – Charges between $2k and $1 million a month
- 03:50 – Started in 2011
- 03:55 – Total revenue in 2015 was $8 million
- 04:20 – Worked with 200 customers in February 2015
- 04:37 – Annual revenue of $40k per user
- 05:00 – LTV to CAC ratio of about 10
- 06:00 – Spending about $15k to acquire a customer
- 06:30 – Some salary costs associated with accessing certain kinds of data
- 07:30 – Currently have net negative churn
- 07:40 – That means that growth from existing accounts offsets any loss of customers
- 08:45 – About to release a new email product
- 09:05 – Total MRR in February was about $700k
- 09:30 – 50 team members locally, plus 500 outsourced
- 10:00 – Raised $8 million total; the last round was a series A of $6 million
- 11:10 – How do you make the decision about when to raise another round?
- 12:50 – Pre-money valuation in the last round was in the tens of millions
- 13:35 – ‘A good partner pays for themselves’ – think about partners, not valuation
- 15:34 – Connect with Anand on twitter
- 18:00 – Famous Five
3 Key Points:
- If you’re deciding whether to run an investment round, look hard at the milestones for your business. Is investment right now going to make significant progress toward those goals?
- Don’t just look at valuations when you’re choosing partners. They should bring something significant to the business beyond investment
- Whatever you’re planning to do, or dreaming you can do: start. It’ll be fun.
- Freshbooks – The site Nathan uses to manage his invoices and accounts.
- Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for cheapest price possible.
- Leadpages – The drag and drop tool Nathan uses to quickly create his webinar landing pages which convert at 35%+
- 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