SaaS: How Brightfunnel CEO Replaced Himself After Hitting $2m+ ARR, 45 Employees

Nadim Hossain

In Episode #856, Nathan interviews Nadim Hossain. He has over 17 years of experience in building marketing and selling cloud applications. Prior to founding BrightFunnel, he was VP of marketing at Power Reviews, paving the way for a $170M exit. He was also the marketing executive at Salesforce from 2007-2010. He has a BA from Cornell and an MBS from Stanford.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – The Hard Thing About Hard Things
  • What CEO do you follow? – Nick Mehta
  • 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? – Nadim wished he would have invested in public stocks


Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:39 – Nathan introduces Nadim to the show
  • 02:07 – Chris Mann of BrightFunnel was at Episode 791
  • 02:17 – Nadim has known Chris as an advisor and brought him to BrightFunnel to be the CEO
  • 02:28 – BrightFunnel was founded in 2013
  • 03:04 – BrightFunnel will soon raise more capital
  • 03:14 – Nadim is now the Chairman of BrightFunnel
  • 04:12 – Nadim is data driven and he’s well experienced in transitions
  • 04:53 – Team size is 45 and will be 50 by the end of the year
  • 05:07 – As a founder and CEO, you have to constantly learn new skills
  • 05:42 – It is in Nadim’s best interest to have great people in his team
  • 06:50 – Nadim is currently operationally active in the company but not most of the time
  • 08:00 – BrightFunnel is valuable enough
  • 10:00 – BrightFunnel has a single digit million in ARR
  • 10:20 – BrightFunnel is raising a typical series B
  • 11:35 – Nadim got an advice to think that every round has a 30% dilution event
  • 13:05 – For fund raising, investors would want to work closely with the CEO so Chris will be mostly in charge of it
  • 14:27 – The transition of Nadim and Chris happened in June 2017
  • 15:02 – Payback period is around 12-18 months and CAC is $50K
  • 16:32 – There’s a lot of things to look at when you’re talking about CAC
  • 18:00 – The Famous Five

3 Key Points:

  1. A company needs someone who will focus on growing it and that’s why there’s a need for a CEO.
  2. Founders should be used in different transitions in their company especially if they’re necessary for success.
  3. Raising another series depends on valuation and target funds to raised.

Resources Mentioned:

  • Simplero – The easiest way to launch your own membership course like the big influencers do but at 1/10th the cost.
  • 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