SaaStr Podcast #176: Kristina Shen, Partner @ Bessemer Venture Partners On What SaaS Startups Need To Raise A Series A Today

Welcome to Episode 176! Kristina Shen is a Partner @ Bessemer Venture Partners, one of the world’s leading venture funds with a portfolio including the likes of Pinterest, Skype, Box, LinkedIn, Yelp, and many more incredible companies. As for Kristina, she serves on the boards of DoubleDutch, Glint, Retail Solutions, and Zoosk, and is also a board observer with RainforestQA, Vidyard, Gainsight, and ServiceTitan. Kristina is also one of the best data gurus as the co-author of Bessemer’s State of the Cloud 2016 and 2017 and Bessemer 10 Laws of Cloud, which captures the top trends among leading public and private cloud computing and enterprise mobile companies. Due to Kristina’s success she has been named to both Forbes and Business Insider’s 30 Under 30 in 2014 and 2016, respectively. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

SaaStr Podcast #174: Timo Rein, Founder & CEO @ Pipedrive Discusses How To Make It Big In The US As A Non-US SaaS Startup

  Welcome to Episode 174! Timo Rein is the Founder & CEO of Pipedrive, the startup that helps sales people focus on actions that close deals. To date, Timo has raised over $30m from the likes of Atomico, Bessemer Venture Partners, TransferWise Founder Taavet Hinrikus, and Andy MCloughlin, and has scaled the team to over 330 people across multiple continents. Prior to founding Pipedrive, Timo was a Partner at Vain & Partners acting in a consultancy role on how to get the best ROI from your sales process and before that was himself a door-to-door salesman with SouthWestern Company selling high-ACV products. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

Corporate VC Investments: Limited, But Real, Pros. And Cons.

2018 is the Best of Times for venture capital.  200+ new seed funds, and a record number of unicorns and decacorns.  And as part of this, more and more big corporations are adding and expanding their venture arms.

For the most part, this is a great thing.  More options are almost always better for founders. Let me share a quick list of Pros, Cons, and Not Big Deals.


  • Usually won’t carry the company or write many “second checks”. This is the biggest issue. Traditional VCs usually reserve another 1x-2x of their first check for later investments. Corporate VCs don’t. They also generally don’t want to “carry” a company and write another check if no one else will. VCs don’t like this either, but they’ll often do it.
  • Aren’t usually great at bringing in next round investors. Top seed investors are good at brining in Series A
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SaaStr Podcast #170: Rob Reid, EVP & Managing Director @ Sage Intacct on Scaling Intacct’s Team & Culture To An $850m Exit

New! Prefer to read the transcript? We’ve got you covered! You’ll find this week’s transcript below. Welcome to Episode 170! Rob Reid is the Executive Vice President & Managing Director @ Sage Intacct, the undisputed global leader serving finance teams of any size. With over 10,000 employees and and over 3m customers, their financial solutions generate over $2Bn in revenue. Prior to Sage Intacct, Rob led Intacct over an incredible 8 year journey culminating in their reported $850m exit to Sage in 2017. Before that he was CEO and President of LucidEra, a market leader for on-demand business intelligence. Prior to LucidEra, Rob was group Vice President of industry leading Siebel CRM for Oracle, managing the SMB sector. Fun fact: over his phenomenal 30 year career, Rob has been involved with 8 startups, 7 of which have had successful exits. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

SaaStr Podcast #164: Mark Godley, President @ LeadGenius Discusses the Right Way To Sell To Enterprise Buyers

Mark Godley is the President of LeadGenius, the startup that provides the power of human intelligence with the scale of machine learning. To date they have raised $16m in funding from the likes of a16z, Initialized Capital, Scott and Cyan Banister, and SV angel just to name a few. As for Mark, he most recently served as Chief Revenue Officer for HG Data and before that was VP of Market Development for ConnectandSell. If that was not enough, Mark also holds advisory roles in the salestech and martech space, including Omniquo,, and The Big Willow. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

SaaStr Podcast #163: Wade Foster, Founder & CEO @ Zapier Discusses Scaling Zapier to $35m in ARR with Just $1.3m in Funding

Welcome to Episode 163! Wade Foster is the Founder & CEO @ Zapier, the startup that moves information between your web apps automatically, so you can focus on your most important work. A couple of incredible achievements from Zapier, they have scaled to a phenomenal $35m in ARR, they have built a time of over 130 people, all without a central office, and they have done this with just $1.2m in early stage funding from the likes of Bessemer, Y Combinator, and DFJ. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn:

LP Confidential: Secrets from the Folks that Give VCs Money (Video + Transcript)

We all know who VCs are and what they do, but where exactly do they get their money? The investors that give them their money–the funds that could eventually end up in your SaaS company–want 3x return for every dollar. So when a VC is pounding on you to get something done, it’s because their LPs are pounding on them to get it done. Harry Stebbings, Host of The Twenty MinuteVC & SaaStr Podcast, moderates this session with Elizabeth “Beezer” Clarkson, Managing Director at Sapphire Ventures; Chris Douvos, Managing Director at Venture Investment Associates; and Alex Bangash, Founder & Chairman at Trusted Insight, as they share wisdom and advice as LPs. One important thing to note? Seek out VCs who offer more than just money. As an entrepreneur, you may start getting calls from LPs who want to co-invest and when those calls start coming in, you should ask yourself
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The Inside Story of Krux and its $700m Acquisition (Video + Transcript)

In this session, Marc Bodnick, former Business and Community Leader at Quora, sits down with longtime friend Tom Chavez, Co-Founder and CEO of Krux, to get the inside story of Krux starting from its early days to getting acquired by Salesforce for a cool $700 million back in November 2016. Tom discusses where the idea of Krux came from, his problem with the company being called a data management platform, how to deal with investors, and why getting acquired by Salesforce made sense – even though he felt Krux could’ve lasted for another 25 years. And if you haven’t heard: SaaStr Annual will be back in 2018, bigger and better than ever! Join 10,000 fellow founders, investors and execs for 3 days of unparalleled networking and epic learnings from SaaS legends like Jon MillerDavid SteinbergJennifer Tejada, and Eoghan McCabe. If you don’t have tickets, lock Continue reading "The Inside Story of Krux and its $700m Acquisition (Video + Transcript)"

Feld Thoughts Live!: One on One with Brad Feld (Video + Transcript)

We were very fortunate to have Harry Stebbings, Host of The Twenty Minute VC & SaaStr Podcast, take the stage to chat with Brad Feld, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Foundry Group, about his thoughts on a variety of topics, such as venture capital and culture. Brad has a ton of experience as an investor, starting when he sold his first company in the early 90s. He provides eye-opening insights on the relationship between CEOs and investors, the trouble with the term “culture,” the role of the Board of Directors, what your board composition should look like and whether or not people are destined to be successful only at certain stages of scale. Listen on for sage advice from someone with over 30 years of experience. And if you haven’t heard: SaaStr Annual will be back in 2018, bigger and better than ever! Join 10,000 fellow founders, investors and execs
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SaaStr Podcast #151: Jyoti Bansal, Founder @ AppDynamics on The Requirements To Proceed Through The Scaling Stages in SaaS To Build One Of The Fastest Growing Enterprise Companies And Achieve a $3.7Bn Exit

Jyoti Bansal is the former Founder & CEO of AppDynamics, backed by the likes of Lightspeed, Greylock and Kleiner Perkins, just to name a few, before it’s ultimate acquisition by Cisco for $3.7Bn. Today, Jyoti is the Founder and CEO of BIG Labs, essentially a laboratory for creating, developing, and launching innovative ideas. The first of these ideas being turned into companies being, the industry’s first continuous delivery as a service platform, where Jyoti is the Founder & CEO. As a result of his tremendous success, Jyoti has been a recipient of many leadership awards including, “Best Cloud Computing CEO to Work For,” “Best CEO” by San Francisco Business Times. In Today’s Episode You Will Learn: