XOR Data Announcing $2m Funding Round Live, Invested $800k Before Any Revenue with CEO Mike Cook

Mike Cook

In Episode #593, Nathan interviews Mike Cook. He founded XOR Data Exchange to bring privacy and accountability back to data management. Today, his organization works with the nation’s largest financial institutions to fight fraud and manage risk. You might have never seen Mike presenting the newest consumer tech, but rest assured every digital entity in America is safer under his watchful eye.



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Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – How to Win Friends and Influence People
  • What CEO do you follow? – Sam Yagan
  • Favorite online tool? — Periscope
  • Do you get 8 hours of sleep?— No
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – “That you should go to anger management”

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:40 – Nathan introduces Mike to the show
  • 02:10 – Mike mentions how XOR Data Exchange works
  • 02:54 – Mike wanted to create a company where financial institutions can share their data with one another
  • 03:16 – XOR Data Exchange is a B2B model
  • 03:21 – XOR Data Exchange will eventually help consumers
  • 04:04 – Mike shares how XOR Data Exchange will work in between companies
  • 04:31 – Companies like AIG and JP Chase Morgan store data
  • 05:32 – XOR Data Exchange changes the mentality of the pipe
  • 06:25 – XOR Data Exchange generates revenue by building pre-exchanges
    • 07:17 – XOR Data Exchange charges transaction fees based on return data
    • 07:38 – XOR Data Exchange is a pay-as-you-go model
  • 07:43 – XOR Data Exchange is building a new exchange focusing on financial services companies where companies can exchange fraud information
  • 08:10 – XOR Data Exchange was launched in January 2014
  • 08:20 – First year revenue is nothing
  • 08:27 – Mike put in his own money in XOR Data Exchange
  • 08:34 – Mike sold his company ID Analytics to fund XOR Data Exchange
    • 08:40 – Mike sold ID Analytics in 2012, which he started in 2000
    • 08:56 – Mike was 17 when he started ID Analytics
    • 09:15 – Mike had 2 other co-founders
  • 09:26 – Mike tried to work in a big company after his exit
  • 09:56 – Mike has raised $6M and will close $2M, today
  • 10:53 – The last round was in August 2015
  • 11:22 – Most of the money from the current round is from the previous investors
  • 11:36 – Mike shares about his Angel investors
  • 12:40 – “Raising a Series B in this environment is not the easiest thing to do”
    • 12:51 – Mike explains what he means by this
  • 13:20 – XOR Data Exchange is working with big customers
  • 13:45 – “If you work with the top 6, 7, 8 financial services companies, you’re really covering 90% of America”
  • 14:05 – XOR Data Exchange has dozens of companies
  • 14:23 – Team size
  • 14:26 – XOR Data Exchange is not yet cashflow positive
  • 15:05 – 2017 goal
  • 15:25 – Most of the XOR Data Exchange employees are tech and based in Austin
  • 17:30 – The Famous Five

3 Key Points:

  1. Reinvest your money in something that you believe in.
  2. The financial service space isn’t the easiest environment to raise a Series B.
  3. If you work with the top 6, 7, or 8 financial services companies, you’re really covering 90% of America.

Resources Mentioned:

  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Drip – Nathan uses Drip’s email automation platform and visual campaign builder to build his sales funnel
  • Toptal– Nathan found his development team using Toptal for his new business Send Later. He was able to keep 100% equity and didn’t have to hire a co-founder due to the quality of Toptal
  • 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.
  • 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
  • Jamf – Jamf helped Nathan keep his Macbook Air 11” secure even when he left it in the airplane’s back seat pocket
  • Freshbooks – Nathan doesn’t waste time so he uses Freshbooks to send out invoices and collect his money. Get your free month NOW
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives