Bootstrapped Founder Eventually Raised Funding From a Big VC

Is it ever a good thing for a practical founder to raise a big funding round from a VC? Sometimes under the right conditions, but it doesn’t happen very often.

You just have to create a valuable and scalable business FIRST, before you raise money from powerful investors. So you can take investment on your terms.

AND you have to see a big enough vision that big investors can get their 10X+ returns someday while growing equity faster for founders and their teams.

Fast growth with big funding is just a completely different sport than bootstrapping with steady growth. Different end game too.

This usually means not taking funding until you have more than $3M-5M ARR and you can see a clear growth path to being a very big business.

AND wanting to play the big VC funding game with all that entails.

Those things together don’t happen very often. But sometimes they do.

Like Mark Abbott, founder and CEO of Ninety, a software platform that helps small to mid-sized companies manage all the data, processes, and people into one comprehensive and powerfully integrated system so they can grow and thrive.

Ninety manages the internal “business operating system” of how companies get the right stuff done. It helps them grow confidently by clarifying goals and plans, aligning teams to the right goals, and making sure it all happens.

Mark Abbott was an active investor and board member for 20 years when he realized that most of the 100+ companies he helped were not good a their “business fundamentals.”

He thought of writing a book but discovered the book “Traction” by Gino Wickman and his branded EOS® (Entrepreneurial Operating System) system.

Ninety partnered with EOS Worldwide to provide a software system to run their proven system. They work with other business operating system providers too.

Ninety grew to over 50 employees with over a thousand customers without any outside funding.

When it was clear there was a HUGE growth opportunity and they had a solid business foundation in place, Mark raised $20M in funding in 2021 from Insight Partners, a top-tier VC.

Mark knows the game of big funding and the sport of scaling companies.

He’s a practical founder with a very big vision and experience in scaling up from a startup to a big business.

Listen to this amazing interview with Mark Abbott on the Practical Founders Podcast.

Happy New Year 2023!


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