The New SaaStr Annual ’17 Website: The Best Event in SaaS. Ever.

Hooray!  We’ve launched the new SaaStr Annual ’17 website here. While it’s a ways off, we already have 1,800+ founders, VPs and VCs signed up, and we expect 10,000 on site by the time we get to February 7 of 2017.
Screen Shot 2016-09-06 at 8.05.08 PM We’re incredibly proud of how it’s coming together.  We’ll have 250 of the best speakers and sessions in SaaS, period, across 3 days (Feb 7-9 2017), a slew of meet-ups, and one epic Big Party. You can view the agenda here and some of the first batch of speakers here, including:

7 Things We’ve Learned in Hybrid Revenue SaaS

unnamed-3 By Tony Knopp, CEO & Co-Founder of InviteManager, which makes planning your client entertainment easy. Building an enterprise SaaS is a challenging proposition. Doing so with a services business attached can be even more interesting. Here are seven things we’ve learned about building, raising money for, and growing an enterprise SaaS with a hybrid services revenue model.
  1. There are no absolutes: Despite what you’ll hear out “in the market” services are not dead, they don’t kill your valuation, and they are not an albatross around your companies neck.
We have three revenue streams: Recurring software license fees (~98% gross margin (GM), affiliate fees (96% GM), and fulfillment services fees (~11% GM). In raising our Series A and B, we saw every kind of valuation you can imagine:

Everybody Lies 2016: SaaS Revenues in the Inc. 5000

Four years ago, we formally kicked off the SaaStr blog with our very first blog post, “Everybody Lies”.  It took a deep dive on the Inc 5000 list, which requires companies to provide and share GAAP revenues to win the award. In SaaS, everybody lies a little.  Bookings instead of MRR.  ARR instead of GAAP (well, everyone does this).  cMRR instead of MRR.  Whatever. But we can actually learn the real #s, at least 2015 GAAP revenues and trailing growth numbers, from Inc. Let’s take a look at the ’16 list.  It’s not as interesting as years past — Hubspot submitted data back in ’12, but most SaaS companies you’ve heard of have opted out.  So it’s not as useful as it was 4 years ago, before we had any SaaS IPOs and things were more opaque.  But there are still some good learnings here:

And the Winner of the International ‘Show Us Your SaaS’ Video Contest is…

We went around the world to FIVE continents to track down start-ups that wanted to show us (& the almost 5,000 that voted) their very best SaaS in hopes of winning a trip to SaaStr Annual this February.   It was super fun to watch the entries roll in for the “Show Us Your SaaS” international video competition.  Twenty-one entries later, we have entries that made us laugh from biscuits to interns to ‘SaaStr Oms’, we have winners …. And a big surprise  ? Before we announce the winner, we need to talk about the elephant in the cloud. Yes, the very creative vote-getting strategies. But startups love the hustle, so it’s to be expected. So after a slight recalibration of the votes (ahem), we are ready to announce the winners. We’d originally planned to award prizes to the teams who received the most votes – a grand prize
collabe / South Korea
eCentry / Brazil
FirstHive / India
FunnelCake / Canada
Howaboutsales / Belgium
Loop11 / Australia
Quotebox / India
RedEye - Australia
Werkin / UK
mnubo / Canada
Cobli - Brazil
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Last 20 Tickets to SaaStr L.A. Summer Social THIS WEDNESDAY

Screen Shot 2016-08-08 at 7.47.14 AMOk we’ve released the final 20 tickets to the L.A. Summer Social, this Wednesday, from 4-8pm at Cornerstone OnDemand in Santa Monica. We’ll have 3 amazing SaaStr-style Q&A sessions on raising $30m+ in capital, scaling to $10m ARR and beyond, and Building a Unicorn. Get your tickets NOW here.

Why Some SaaS Companies Stall Out at $20m ARR

Part of my job when I invest in a start-up is to get folks excited about the company.  It’s not that hard.  Because I am genuinely excited.  Or I wouldn’t make the investment .  And part of the picture I try to paint for the The Next Investor is where they’ll be in 12-18 months. E.g., “Well, RainforestQA is at $5m ARR and has grown 14.20309% a month for the past 5 months and is completely changing the way a $50 billion market does …” [numbers not actual, just for the sample anecdote]. If the growth is there, the company is solid, the market good, and the CEO credible and strong, then usually, it’s just one point of pushback I get. “It will never last.  There’s no chance they can keep it up.” OK, I say.  Agreed.  But what’s going to stop company X from continuing to grow at
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In SoCal? Come to the First SaaStr L.A. Summer Social on Wed August 10!!

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It’s time. For a deep dive on all things MRR, ARR, L4M, CLTV, NPS, CSAT, and more. At the Beach!! Or at least close to it.

Rincon Venture Partners (Jim Andelman and John Greathouse) and SaaStr will be hosting the 2017 L.A. Summer Social!

2 great sessions of content:

From 4-6pm ish.

  • Then, cocktails and meeting-up — until they kick us out!


>> You

> 2 Amazing SaaStr-style sessions > 20 great cocktails (ok, we’ll do our best) > 250+ great SaaS founders and execs and THE BEST
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What amount of revenue is required for a healthy exit for a startup in an industry that is worth tens of billions?

If you are going to sell — $10-$15m in recurring revenues is a GREAT time to sell. Relatively speaking, at least. $10m or so in ARR is often in my experience a “local maximum”. When your traction will be most valued by potential acquirers, because you’ve proven you are a market leader, with real revenues ($10m+), that the acquirer believes they can “easily” scale to hundreds of millions and beyond: And at $10m-$15m in ARR, usually you haven’t raised too much venture capital. So it’s fairly easy to get a deal done where everyone wins. More here: Acquisitions — If You Do Sell, Try to Make Sure It’s At a Local Maximum I’m not saying you actually should sell. But if you are going to sell — this is often a good time to do it. You can grow another 2x or 3x in revenues from this point, and not Continue reading "What amount of revenue is required for a healthy exit for a startup in an industry that is worth tens of billions?"