Episode 413 | How Lucidchart Grew to 13 Million Users with Freemium

Show Notes

In this episode of Startups For The Rest Of Us, Rob and Mike talk about how Lucidchart grew to 13 million users with freemium.  They point out effective ways to use freemium, viral loops, horizontal markets, and how you could incorporate some of these things in your bootstrapped startup.

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Transcript

Rob: In this episode of Startups For The Rest Of Us, Mike and I talk about how Lucidchart grew to 13 million users using the freemium model. This is Startups For The Rest Of Us 413.

Welcome to Startups For The Rest Of Us. The podcast that helps developers, designers, and entrepreneurs be awesome at building, launching, and growing software products whether you’ve built your first product or you’re just thinking about it. I’m Rob.

Mike: And I’m Mike.

Rob: We’re here to share our experiences to help you avoid the same mistakes we’ve made. To where this week, sir?

Mike: Did you happen to see the announcement that FogBugz/Manuscript was being acquired by DevFactory?

Rob: I got an email out of the blue and was completely shocked by that. I shouldn’t be, right? Fog Creek, for those who don’t know, was founded by Joel Spolsky and Mike Pryor back in, I believe, it was 2000 or 2001. Joel was probably the first blogger I ever read. He had so many insights about how to start software company and how to project-manage and all that stuff that I was really enthralled by him. And then he launched FogBugz but then they went into Stack Overflow and Trello and all this other stuff. I was always like, “This is crazy. They’ve had a lot of successes.”

Mike: They also had a CityDesk which was their blogging tool, I don’t think that it ever really went anywhere. I think they got it to version 2.

Rob: Content management. It was a website content management territory, but it was desktop, right as the switch to SaaS was happening.

Mike: I think it was before WordPress came out or just about the same time. But it was published through the website, so everything was all straight HTML. I think they had an internal beta version that Joel was still using for a while, it was like version 3-A or something like that that just never got out there publicly. I find it interesting that they decided to sell that business to an outside company just because the way that they’ve kind of run the business, it’s odd.

Rob: Yeah, it’s definitely unexpected. I don’t know what else I expected though. I mean, it’s freaking 17 years later–these things don’t last forever. I remember when Joel stepped down as CEO of Fog Creek, I was like, “Oh my gosh!” but it’s like, “Well, of course, he’s going to do Stack Overflow.” I believe Mike Pryor stepped up at that point and then Mike Pryor went up to be CEO of Trello once that took off. They really used it as an incubator–Fog Creek itself. It’s no surprise that they had the third CEO and it’s running Fog Creek. I don’t even know who’s running FogBugz.

I don’t even know if Fog Creek still owns anything else. Do they or is the company just going to shut down? Because they sold Trello, Stack Overflow is its own entity at this point, they haven’t used Fog Creek developers for years. Probably 10 years at this point. Manuscript is the only thing I know that they still had.

Mike: No, they still have Glitch.

Rob: What is that?

Mike: I don’t even know because they’ve been working on it for three, four years at this point, and I still don’t understand what it actually is, which it seems like it’s some sort of a programming framework without the programming. I don’t really understand it, to be perfectly honest. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. I don’t know, I don’t know what to tell you about that.

Rob: I just googled Fog Creek Glitch and it says, “Fog Creek is renaming itself to Glitch. We’ve been thrilled to see the community embrace Glitch as the home for creating and discovering the coolest stuff on the web.” It sounds like Reddit. I’m confused at this point. I just haven’t followed this story. Fog Creek has been basically, a B2B software company–or at least Manuscript, Trello was, and then Stack Overflow was obviously VC-funded. Stack Overflow, I was going to say social network, but it’s more like a question and answer platform.

Yeah, it’s a trip man. I have mad respect for what Mike Pryor and Joel have built. You and I have both met them in person at BOS. I’ve had multiple conversations with them. These are smart, ethical-driven software developers who have done a lot I think for both the people that they’ve hired, but also in sharing their knowledge and building the tools. I have nothing but respect for these guys. The amount of success they’ve had, when you say, “Yeah, the same people that started Stack Overflow also started Trello and started this other seven or eight-figure company called FogBugz.” that’s a lot to do in a career.

Mike: I wonder if part of the reason they spun that off was because of the way that they want to run the business and the way that they want to treat the developers because I think early on, they had talked a lot about how they wanted to treat everybody—who’s working within the company—with respect and make sure that they participated in the successes of the business.

I remember some blog articles or some discussions on one of the podcasts that they had at one point talk about Stack Overflow, but because Stack Overflow and Trello were both born out of Fog Creek, at some point, they had to split the business. How do you compensate the people who were originally in Fog Creek and were excited and maybe helped out a little bit, but didn’t necessarily go with that team? There was also a question of like somebody had an idea for, I think it was co-pilot at the time, and it ended-up come in like a $1 million line of business for them, ARR. It’s just like, how do you compensate that person for the ideas and stuff that they’ve brought in?

At this point, FogBugz has been running for years, and there’s probably not a huge number of things that they’re going to add to it, I mean they could integrate it with other business processes and things like that, but there’s not a lot of other stuff they could do with it. It’s really just kind of the cash cow for them, but how do you translate that into a financial or monetary success for the people who are currently in the business and may have been there for anywhere up to 10 or 15 years at this point? It’s a private company, so I don’t think they hand out equity. I don’t know.

Rob: I think they did profit sharing, was my recollection. They did hand out dividends because like you just said, it was a pretty profitable company.

Mike: Got it.

Rob: On my end, I just got an email this morning that said, “Stripe is now valued at $20 billion.”

Mike: Oh, is that all?

Rob: Oh, man. Their last round was at $9 billion. I don’t normally follow these funding and valuation stories, but since we basically have had dinner with both the Collison brothers and been on stage with them at MicroConf, I kind of have a vested interest in keeping up with what they’re doing. Bravo to them. I have nothing but respect for those guys.

Mike: That’s an insane number but both of them are super, super smart guys. You stand near them and you just feel dumber.

Rob: Totally. When I’m around them, yeah, I feel dumber, but I feel my IQ points, I gain maybe 5 or 10 just in speaking to them. “Oh, you taught me a new word and a new concept today.”

Mike: “…that I thought I knew for 10 years, but you clearly know it better than me.”

Rob: Yeah, exactly.

Mike: Good for them. I think a lot of our audience probably still uses Stripe.

Rob: Still, what do you mean? Still uses. I wouldn’t go anywhere else, it’s insane to think of going back to the days of Authorize.net and PayPal web payments pro. I guess there’s Braintree now, right?

Mike: That’s what I was going to say. I hear that on a “higher-end” people are migrating to Braintree and, I don’t know if any other options actually other than Stripe and Braintree. But I don’t know anything about Braintree. It’s just interesting to see the ark that they’ve taken over the past, what, eight years or so? It’s just crazy how much they’ve grown and the things that they do are quite honestly, for the entrepreneurial community, they have enabled the vast majority of us to be able to do what we do. Without Stripe, most of the businesses that are out there just would not exist.

Rob: Or it’d be lot harder to get them off the ground. I remember trying to get an Authorize.net account and it just took weeks of literally sending stuff on paper and faxing it back and forth. This was only maybe six years ago, seven years–it wasn’t that long, and I’m not talking 2005. It was just insane to me that a) how are we not doing this online or at least e-signing things? But I literally was just printing out this 30-page document. It was such a nightmare. I’m glad Stripe came on the scene.

Mike: I’ve spent a fair amount of time over the past couple of weeks rebuilding and migrating some of my infrastructure in order to cut costs. I’ve doubled the number of servers. I’ve gone from two servers to four and I’ve reduced the costs of them by out 75% which is odd. I have everything hosted on Azure and they have these things called burstable virtual machines. Basically, if they are running below a certain threshold in terms of process or usage, then you pay basically, a discounted rate for it and you are gaining credits at that point. If you are using more than that percentage then you’re basically burning into your credits

I think they had maxed out the CPU with that but basically, I just paid less for this machine or these machines because I’m not using them all day every day. It’s like there are certain times a day where I need more processing power and rest of the time I just don’t need it. It’s nice to be able to have moved over to those types of servers and save a fair chunk of change. But I needed to split up my infrastructure anyway because I didn’t like having everything on just two servers.

Rob: That makes sense. It’s nice to put a few more bucks in your pocket.

Mike: Yeah. I pushed off on that division for probably about a year or so. It was kind of time to do it.

Rob: Anything else?

Mike: The last thing is, this is totally random but there’s a website that I stumbled across when I was trying to do calculations for my Dungeons and Dragons game, to kind of optimize my character. If you’re into figuring out probabilities on different dice rolls, you can head over to anydice.com. It will basically allow you to write functions that will essentially simulate what the dice rolls are, and then it will show you the percentages and distributions, and you can see crafts and stuff like that of exactly what those distributions look like.

You can say how many attacks or if you have advantage or disadvantage on different attacks or damage rolls or things like that then it will show you what those numbers look like and what’s your average rolls would be.

It’s pretty cool. You can probably spend a whole ton of time on it, but they do have some documentation there and some ready-built functions you just pull, and copy paste into the editor.

Rob: I see what you did there, Mike. Do you realize you started that segment off, you said, “This is totally random.” But any dice stuck. You can’t […] by me, man. Really bad puns. Alright. Cool.

Let’s dive into what we’re talking about today. It’s an article on a blog of freshworks.com. They have a sales CRM , it’s that section or that category of the blog, but the article is titled, “How Lucidchart Grew to 13 million Users on a land-and-expand Strategy.” I want to talk a little bit about the virality and the freemium part of it. It’s an interesting interview with, I believe, is the SVP of Sales and Customer Success of Lucidchart.

If you haven’t heard of Lucidchart, it is a Software as a Service with a freemium model, they have 13 million users and it is like Visio–it is how I think of it. It’s a diagram solution where you can create diagrams and share them and then collaborate on them. Is that an accurate description, Mike? You said you’ve used it.

Mike: Yeah. That’s probably pretty accurate. I think Visio seems like they started out much more for data modelling within a programming environment. But Vision also has a lot of different icons and stuff that you can put in there for like network map layouts and office maps layouts and stuff like that. You can use it for other things like org charts and stuff like that, but I think originally, it seemed like it started out as part of the MSDN suite, you get a few sign-ups for that, and it was primarily a programming tool.

Rob: Right. And it expanded into other things. Lucidchart, looks like it was started around 2010, 2011 and they raised $1 million in funding which you would need if you’re going to do freemium model, and then three years later they raised $5 million, and then two years after that—in 2016—they raised $36 million. I can imagine they probably hit a hockey stick moment where the user growth justified raising–because you raise that much money, you want to have really high valuation, so you don’t give away most of your company.

They said that 96% of Fortune 500 companies use it. They have customers at Google, Amazon, Cisco, and Intel, and they receive around 500,000 sign-ups every month. It’s a free tool, right? It’s free, no credit card, if I recall. That’s still a big number though. A nice horizontal market that these guys are in. They’ve obviously achieved success–13 million users is a ton of people; it’s a ton of people to support, it’s a ton of people just to have your software running.

I wish that they’d told us how many paying users or how many paying accounts because that’s really what I’m interested in. I’m interested to know if they are even profitable on revenue, above the amount of just sheer volume because they must have hundreds of employees, and I would like to know that. But all that said, what I want to talk about today is really the freemium and the viral one and they have some stuff about sales as well.

Mike: I’m sure their competitors would love to know how much money they’re making too.

Rob: Yeah, totally. I know. It’ll come out at some point. They’ll wind up talking about it.

Mike: Alright. Why don’t we dive right in then?

Rob: Sure. The first question for Dan Cook, which is the SVP of Sales, the interviewer asks him, “It runs on a freemium model, how do you pitch the product, and how do you scale it to an enterprise model?” His response is, “The freemium gives them an advantage because they have this—this is where the land-and-expand comes in within a company—they get employees within a company using the product and then they share it with other people in the company to collaborate and then they set-up accounts, so there’s a freemium plus virality there. The reason they sign-up for it is a) it’s free and b) because it’s a good tool.

In the early days it was good enough. It was not a great tool but as it developed, I bet these days, it is best in class or is becoming then. He said that, basically, they can have 15 or 20 paid or free users of Lucidchart within a company. Then they leverage that fact to say, “Alright, IT department, here’s a value proposition for you.” This is a similar model to other tools. Slack, I’ve heard them talk about this a lot. That one small development team within a huge org would start using it and of course, you have to invite other people for it to have any value. Once you have 10, 20, 30 users, IT Departments and frankly, CTOs and CIOs want to have control of that kind of stuff. It’s an interesting dual use of that freemium plus virality.

Mike: Yeah, I’ve seen that at a much, much smaller scale in Bluetick where somebody will sign-up for Bluetick and one of the earlier objections I’ve heard from somebody was like, “Oh, well. I wanted to sign-up for it but then I would have had to go to my boss and get his credit card.” That freemium model, even just the 14-day trial that I had or that I added in after talking to that customer, it allows them to sign-up for it without having to go to their boss and justify like, “Hey, I need the corporate credit card and it’s going to cost this much money.” Because in the enterprise environment, they’re probably going to not only have to go to their boss, but then their boss is going to have to justify it to somebody else.

Nobody really knows if it’s going to work. If they just start using it, in a freemium model, they can just use it and if it doesn’t work out for them, they just shut it down or just abandon it. If it does then as more people start using it then it becomes more visible. As a result of its success, then Lucidchart can go in and ask them for money for an enterprise license or a small group license within a department or something like that. But it is interesting to see that they seem to have intentionally done that or chosen that strategy.

Rob: Right. I want to point out some things that Lucidchart has or had that listeners to this podcast may not have, and if you don’t have all these things in place, it’s going to be difficult, if not impossible to pull off this strategy that they did–this freemium strategy.

Mike: Do you want to start with the $36 million or…?

Rob: That’s what I was going to say. Funding–that’s the first one. It wasn’t $36 million originally. For the first three years it was $1 million. That’s actually not that much money for three years. You can hire a few people but it’s not like you’re going to hire 20 employees and not bleed that out. But yes, funding was one advantage they had; $1 million in funding. Another $5 million three years later. The fact that they are a very horizontal market much like Trello and Dropbox and Slack, those are three other tools that have used the same approach–this freemium plus viral component.

If you’re in a horizontal market and you can raise enough funding or self-fund this thing to the point where you can provide the service to all the free users, it really can be this fascinating approach. The other thing is they have virality, not every tool has that. I think of a tool like Drip or even a proposal software, invoicing software, there’s a little bit of virality and that you can have a Powered By or a Sent From or a Sent With. But true, deep virality like Trello where–I mean, I use some Trello boards for that other people but there’s a lot of collaboration that goes on there. Slack is all about being viral. You have to invite other people to get any value.

Lucidchart does not need, need, need. You’d have another person to get value, but I would say, that’s probably a big reason that people would use it because it’s so easy to get you charts and collaborate. Of course, Dropbox has it’s all other things. Having virality plus that freemium I think is a big thing that people overlook. Because having freemium on its own without funding, being horizontal, and virality is not all it’s cracked up to be.

Mike: I think this is also a tool that because of what you’re using it for, you’re using it to help communicate, that helps it too. That kind of sets it apart from a lot of other tools. Trello, to some extent, just by inviting people, you get to have them take a look at what it is that you’re working on. But with Lucidchart, you can print those things out, you can embed them into Word document, or even just take screenshots, but by being able to invite people and say, “Hey, this is the process, or this is the workflow that I’m looking at. What do you think? Is this going to work for our team?” That right there—because it’s embedded in the communications—that just inherently makes it even more viral.

Because if people look at the tool and they like it and they want to use it because it’s a lot easier to use than something like Visio, it gives it those additional advantages. It gives people the “aha” moment that they need in order to say, “Yeah. I want to use this too.”

Rob: Another question that he asks this VP of Sales, which I thought was kind of cool, I don’t know, I hadn’t thought that much about it, but he says, “Let’s talk about your value proposition. How does it work when you’re convincing a company to buy the enterprise version? What to the teams and what does the enterprise get out of it? Why don’t they just keep using their individual accounts?” I like that because a) you’re asking why should they upgrade or why should they consolidate? He says, basically, the value to the end-user is that it’s all consolidated and it’s much easier to share among their co-workers. You don’t have to convert diagrams into other formats to be compatible. If everybody starts using it in your company then you don’t have to be like, “Oh, you’re using Visio? I’m using Lucidchart. Let’s convert to this format.” and blah blah blah.

Then to the IT department, the first one is consolidated billing, so there’s only one bill and you know you can negotiate that and manage it. It’s just easier to do it. Also, for training, a lot of big companies especially provide training for their tools. If you have just everybody using one tool, it’s easier. Then secure logins which is fine but the one that really gets them is document retention which is where someone leaves the company, as someone is running that company or running that IT department, you want to have access to everything they did while they were there because you might need to reference that later. If they take individual accounts away with them then you’ll never get that stuff back. It’s not even someone stealing it or taking it away, it kind of goes away. They forget about it or you just don’t have access to it.

That was a big one working at Leadpages and Drip is seeing people leave and being like, “Oh, yeah. There was that one thing that he shared with me and now I don’t have access to it.” It could be kind of a pain. It’s interesting to think—if you’re going to try to pull this off—about what the value prop is that you have to offer for people to upgrade.

Mike: The other interesting piece there that’s in that enterprise group subscription there is the idea that, it’s not just if somebody leaves the company, but what happens if you have to fire somebody. You want to be able to have like this master key that says, “Okay, we’re going to lock you out of everything before we follow through with letting this person go.” and then still have access to all that stuff. There’s that side of it to consider too. I think one and two-person businesses don’t tend to think about that because they just don’t experience it. But the larger companies that they are advertising to or agencies or other small businesses 50-100 people, those companies do think about that and it is important to them.

It’s good to understand that that is a value proposition that you can leverage as a marketing point to those larger companies and say, “Look, this is why you should upgrade or this is why you should buy higher-priced tier because we are including this for your account versus a freelancer account which doesn’t really have any of that stuff and oh, we have a 25 people have 25 different freelancer accounts.” Yeah, it’s not ideal because they get 25 different bills but at the same time, that master key is kind of what people are looking for.

Rob: And then he asked him a question about their outbound sales process. He says, “Yeah, we have 80 sales people and their core play is they basically target companies that already have some form of adoption.” You likely would, I’m guessing, you’re going to use some type of data augmentation tool, like a full contact, to augment you customer data to know who they work for or just look at the email address, look at the domain, the .com on the end of their email, and do a Group By and see how many people are using it. As simple as that.

If you get 20 people inside Disney or Target or BestBuy or something, it’s like they reach out and say, “Hey, you have 20 people that have signed-up for accounts. Do you want to aggregate that?” It’s an interesting thing. I’ve heard, I believe, it was either Slack or Trello also talk about this as an approach. It’s like warm outbound. It’s an interesting approach.

Mike: You just hope that their CEO or their CTO isn’t so totally paranoid that he says no outside tools that are based in the cloud and shuts them all down.

Rob: Yeah, it could happen, I supposed.

Mike: I think that’s a lot less common today than I think it was 5 or 10 years ago. But I have run into those people who say that kind of stuff and there’s usually exceptions for that. They can’t possibly have everything self-hosted. It is just not realistic.

Rob: Yup. There’s a couple more questions that I think are relevant. One is, he asks him, “Lucidchart is the popular alternative to Microsoft Visio, how do you differentiate yourself?” He basically gracefully says, “We’re grateful to Vision, but it’s outdated. It’s a classic Microsoft style product, and it has a lot of innovation on it since they acquired it in 2000.” That’s that whole thing where, yeah, you can have a better funded competitor but as a startup, your secret super power is you can move fast, and you can be closer to the customer. Because I’m guessing, a lot of the developers working on Visio—assuming there are some still—they’re not nearly in close contact as someone at Lucidchart is when they’re in their customer success department having one-on-one conversations with their clients.

Mike: I think that’s partly a difference in how the product was originally engineered. There is a cloud version of Visio, I believe, so it’s enabled for people to collaborate and stuff which has always been the biggest problem with Visio documents, is that it’s like a Word document that you have to basically send it back and forth. Even if you’re using something like Dropbox, you still have the problem of having multiple people trying to work on the same thing at the same time and it just doesn’t work very well.

That’s why Google docs has kind of come around and been such a massive upstart in the past, what was it, like 10, 15 years ago when that came out. But Word had been out in the mid-90s or the early 90s. Something like Lucidchart just has a fundamentally different delivery mechanism than Visio. Visio has to make that backward compatibility so they’re not able to do the same types of things versus Lucidchart, they’re like, “We don’t care about actually running locally on the desktop.” It just doesn’t matter to them which gives them some advantages right there.
Rob: Right. It’s interesting to think like if Microsoft really cared about the market—I just don’t think it’s big enough for them to care about probably—but they should have, would have built a web-based version back in 2008 because it was totally doable. But they didn’t and so, somebody decided at some point not to do that. I know they have collaboration features now built into the Office tools. I don’t use many of the Office tools anymore, only when absolutely need to. I’m just in Google docs all the time.

Mike: I bet they sunk all the resources into the Windows Vista.

Rob: Windows Vista, yeah. That must have been it.

Mike: It must have been it.

Rob: To round it out, he ask him, “What do you think are the top three reasons for Lucidchart’s success?” He says, “Well, people need visual communication tools and there wasn’t really anything that was that great. Second is, we made it enterprise ready, so selling into that enterprise, it was not hard. They have collaborations and integrations and all that stuff and freemium–those are the three things he says. I think he leaves out the virality. I actually believe the fact that a) the market is big, I think is a good thing. They chose a large market. I have a Lucidchart account. The reason I have it is because I got invited by two separate people on two separate diagrams. I would count as one of the 30 million users.

Now, I don’t go in, I never created a Lucidchart diagram myself, but I have collaborated with other people. I think that’s an element, a fourth thing that he didn’t mention that I do think is probably a decent driver of their trial sign-ups.

Mike: I do think the other thing that really helps them is the fact that it’s surprisingly easy to be able to get in and get started with Lucidchart, create some things that are generically applicable across the business without being locked into , “Oh, I have to use this for data modelling.” It sort of does these other things well but not really. That’s the way I would describe the difference between Visio and Lucidchart.

Whereas Lucidchart doesn’t necessarily have the data tie ins to be able to, let’s say for example, a database design, but there’s lots of other ways to do that these days. That makes Vision, I’ll say, that less powerful in that respect. But you don’t need that with Lucidchart. You can just create a generic process. Instead of sketching it out on paper and saying, “Oh well, I’ve got this customer support process that’s got to do this.” Or, “I’ve got this marketing process where I’ve got this email Drip campaign over here and the sales page over there.” You can wire them up in Lucidchart and use that to document your marketing sales funnel, for example. It works really, really well for that.

The downside is, you do have to keep it up-to-date because nothing is automatic but as long as you need to document it anyway, you may as well use something like Lucidchart where you can create good documentation that shows you how everything ties together.

Rob: 500,000 sign-ups every month, Mike. What would you do with that?

Mike: I don’t know. Take it to the bank, retire?

Rob: Yeah, that’s crazy. You can just imagine the processes they must have in place in order to even be able to support that many users.

Mike: You know, I’d be interested to see what they have for a backend infrastructure because I’m just like an engineering nerd like that. Like, “How the heck do you handle that much? How many is that per minute?”

Rob: I know. One point of data is I went to Crunchbase and it says, “According to owler.com that they have 7.1 million in annual revenue.” You don’t know how accurate that is but it’s an estimate by an outside company.

Mike: And at 500,000 sign-ups a month, that’s about one every five seconds which is insane.

Rob: Yup. I know, it’s crazy. They say, let’s see, employee count is between 101 and 250–it’s about what I expect. It says, “A team of 150 plus employees.” You don’t know when that was written but I would guess, if it was even a year ago, I bet they’re at probably over 200 by now. That gives you an idea of their size. That’s the thing, they’ve raised $42 million, if they are at $7 million or $10 million in recurring revenue, that’s not a home run. They need to get bigger than that in order to return that kind of funding because the valuation was definitely north of $100 million. I mean, $120 million, $180 million, somewhere in that range, if I were to guess. At that point, you need to sell for half a billion or a billion dollars to return venture returns. To get there, you need to have $100 million in ARR. They have a long way to go to get there.

I don’t want folks to take this entire episode the wrong way, I’m not saying that we should model ourselves after Lucidchart or anything like that, I was pointing out that the way to use freemium, viral loops, thinking about horizontal markets, thinking about other way to approach problems, how could you, in your little maybe B2B bootstrap niche try and corporate some of these things?

Mike: I think the other takeaway you could have for our audience of listeners is that, even with 500,000 sign-ups a month, as you said, financially, this is probably still not a home run.
Rob: Right. If they haven’t raised $40 million, it could be alright if they’d only raise up to $6 million and could have done it, then that’s a totally different story but that’s where I like raising a lot of funding and having this big valuation. It means you have much higher expectations at that point.

Mike: Right. All it does is dilute the founder and some of the investors, earlier investors maybe, but it makes it hard to have a spectacular exit if you’ve, I’ll say, weighed down by too much investment.

Well, on that note, I think that about wraps us up. If you have a question for us, you can call it into our voicemail number at 1-888-801-9690 or you can email it to us at questions@startupsfortherestofus.com. Our theme music is an excerpt from We’re Outta Control by MoOt used under Creative Commons. Subscribe to us in iTunes by searching for startups and visit startupsfortherestofus.com for a full transcript of each episode. Thanks for listening. We’ll see you next time.

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