$300,000 Per Year Worth $15 Million?

Jon Gillon

In Episode #364, Nathan interviews Jonathan Gillon, the founder of Roost. His unique business costs almost nothing to run, and is taking over the nation. Though he has experienced failures along with success in his business endeavors, Jon is a self-proclaimed optimist. He sees the potential growth of his business and wants to be the one to take it to its full potential.

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Famous 5:

  • Favorite Book? – The Hard Thing about Hard Things
  • What CEO do you follow? — Andy Dunn
  • Favorite online tool? — Geckoboard
  • Do you get 8 hours of sleep?—Yes
  • If you could let your 20-year-old self know one thing, what would it be? — Don’t get kicked out of college. Stop getting in trouble.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:10 – Nathan’s introduction
  • 01:25 – Jonathan explains Roost
  • 01:45 – Profits come from a percentage of transaction fees
  • 02:55 – They focus on storage and parking spaces
    • 03:15 – Mostly garages
  • 03:45 – His first-year revenue was zero
    • 04:10 – He found an opportunity with a storage unit that was closing
  • 05:45 – Numbers of buyers and sellers
  • 06:55 – He has a team of 17 people in San Francisco
  • 07:30 – His rent in San Francisco
  • 08:25 – $4.9 million in capital
  • 09:35 – Roost uses a “targeted approach” working with car-share companies
  • 10:55 – Total revenue 2015 – $80000
  • 11:25 – Revenue is now 25k/month
  • 12:10 – Reasoning behind the company’s evaluation
    • 12:50 – Potential of the company
    • 13:30 – Jonathan sees great value in Roost
    • 14:00 – They are still in “beta mode”
    • 15:00 – They have virtually no competitors
  • 16:10 – Jonathan prefers to “build something big and fail” than build something small
  • 17:05 – His experience with Droperty Tax
    • 17:40 – He lost everything he earned from that company
  • 18:30 – He wants to grow revenue and get Roost to its potential
  • 19:25 –Jon’s blog about his experiences as an entrepreneur
  • 21:20 – Average revenue per buyer – about $41
  • 22:20 – “We’ve got almost no churn.”
  • 23:10 – Cost to find a new space is almost nothing
    • 23:30 – Money is spent on marketing
  • 24:35 – He pays himself $64k
  • 25:30 – The Famous Five

3 Key Points:

  1. Look for a business opportunity that requires low upfront costs.
  2. Don’t be afraid to stand behind your business and be optimistic about its potential.
  3. If your company gets bought, don’t go on a spending spree.

Resources Mentioned:

  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for cheapest price possible.
  • Freshbooks – The site Nathan uses to manage his invoices and accounts.
  • 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.
  • Geckoboard – Jonathan’s favorite online tool