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The Official Saastr Podcast: SaaS | Founders | Investors

The Official Saastr Podcast is the latest and greatest from the world of Saastr, interviewing the most prominent operators and investors to discover their tips, tactics and strategies to attain success in the fiercely competitive world of SaaS. On the side of the operators, we centre around getting from $0 to $100m ARR faster, what it takes to scale successfully and what are the core elements of hiring. As for the investors, we learn what metrics they hone in on when examining SaaS business, what type of metrics excites them and what they look for in SaaS founders.
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Now displaying: December, 2018
Dec 17, 2018

Guy Podjarny is the Founder & CEO @ Snyk, the developer-first solution that automates finding and fixing vulnerabilities in your dependencies. To date, Guy has raised over $32m in VC funding from Snyk from some of the great of venture including Accel, GV, our friends at Boldstart and Canaan Partners, just to name a few. As for Guy, prior to Snyk, he was the CTO of Akamai’s Web Performance Business following their acquisition of his startup, Blaze.io. Before founding Blaze, Guy built Web Application Security products, including the first Web App Firewall (AppShield), Dynamic Application Security Testing tool (AppScan) and Static Application Security Testing tool (AppScan Dev Edition). Fun fact on Guy, he is the holder of 18 patents related to security and performance.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Guy made his way into the world of SaaS and came to found one of the hottest open source companies of our day in the form of Snyk?
  • How does Guy navigate between the difficult balance of going wide on market and shallow on product or narrow in market and deep in product? What is the decision-making process? What does Guy advise founders on feature prioritisation in the early days? Does Guy agree if you are not embarrassed by V1, you have shipped too late? How does support provide a feedback loop on what to build next?  
  • Why does Guy believe that, “successful freemium requires giving away your secret sauce”? How can one give away enough secret sauce in freemium without giving away too much people don’t buy? How does freemium fundamentally alter your relationship to revenue? Where does Guy see many going wrong when pursuing the freemium model?  
  • How does Guy think about the problem of agency with developers using the product but having to sell to CIOs? What 2 things can be done to make this sell easier? What does Guy believe is the right framework to think about pricing through? Why is transparency in enterprise pricing not always optimal?
  • What does Guy believe is required to have strong and seamless communication across functions and locations? How has Guy seen this change over time and with increased locations? Where does Guy see many going wrong when trying to scale team across location?   

Guy’s 60 Second SaaStr:

  1. How does Guy know when is the right time to hire your first sales person?
  2. How did Guy learn to let go and trust his team?
  3. What does Guy know now that he wishes he had known at the beginning?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here: 

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings 

SaaStr

Guy Podjarny

Dec 10, 2018

Claire Hughes Johnson, COO @ Stripe the new standard in online payments that handles billions of dollars of business every year for forward thinking businesses around the world. To date, Stripe has raised over $680m in funding from some of the very best in the business including Sequoia, Founders Fund, General Catalyst, Thrive, CapitalG, Kleiner Perkins and Tiger Global. As for Claire, prior to Stripe she spent over 10 years at Google in a range of different roles from VP of Google's self-driving car division to VP of Global Online Sales to VP of Google Offers. At Stripe, Claire has helped take Stripe global in February 2016 with the launch of Atlas, a toolkit that enables any business, anywhere in the world, to incorporate in the United States. If that was not enough, Claire is also a Board Member @ Hallmark Cards.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Claire made her way into the world of SaaS with Stripe following her leading of Google’s self-driving car division?
  • What does Claire mean when she discusses “founding documents”? What is the right way to go about creating them? What element do they need to contain? How can one optimise internal decision-making process with these documents? What question must one always try and ask when making big decisions?
  • How does Claire define a truly special COO? What does that truly great look like? When is the right time for founders to hire that COO? Where do the majority of people go wrong in their assessment of when and what they need in a COO? What is the optimal relationship one can have between CEO and COO?
  • How does Claire think about what Stripe have done right to hire so effectively at scale? What does it take in terms of benchmarks and standards to do so? What does Claire mean when she says you have to step function up your capabilities with scale? What are the core challenges in hiring at scale?  

Claire’s 60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What would Claire say are her biggest strengths and weaknesses?
  2. What does Claire know now that she wishes she had known at the beginning?
  3. A moment in Claire’s life that has served as an inflection point and changed the way she thinks?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here:

 

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr 

Claire Hughes Johnson

Dec 3, 2018

Krish Subramanian is the Founder & CEO @ Chargebee, the startup that lets you go beyond billing, payments and recurring invoices — to delivering subscription experiences that "wow". To date, Chargebee have “wowed” some of the world’s leading VCs to the tune of $24m including the likes of Insight Venture Partners, Tiger Global and Accel Partners. As for Krish, under Krish’s leadership the team has grown to over 200 people and over 5,000 clients making it one of the next generation in truly global SaaS businesses started in India.

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How Krish made his way into the world of SaaS and came to found one of India fastest growing SaaS companies in Chargebee?
  • Why does Krish believe that every SaaS company should bootstrap at some stage? What are the inherent benefits to these capital constraints? What are the drawbacks to not having the capital reserves? What was the inflection point for Krish in realising he wanted to go big and raise from Insight?  
  • Why does Krish believe that it is wrong to think of the word “service” as being negative in SaaS? What are some of the foundational benefits to building out a strong services division? How does Krish think about what makes for good margins in services businesses? How can one prevent themselves from being reliant on service revenue?
  • Why does Krish believe that transparency is not always good when it comes to SaaS pricing? What are the cons of transparent pricing? Why does Krish believe if you are going to try freemium, it has to be from the beginning? How does Krish think about reinventing the wheel vs copying when it comes to pricing? How does Krish think about installing usage based pricing without disincentivizing usage? How can one do it?

Krish’s 60 Second SaaStr:

  1. What does Krish know now that he wishes he had known at the beginning?
  2. What moment in Krish’s life has served as an inflection point and changed the way he thinks?
  3. What does Krish believe that most around him disbelieve?

If you would like to find out more about the show and the guests presented, you can follow us on Twitter here: 

Jason Lemkin

Harry Stebbings

SaaStr

Krish Subramanian

 

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