How There Are Just As Many Self-Funded Companies With Over 50 Employees On Gregslist As Vc-Funded Companies

Gregslist is the curated list of ALL 6000+ software companies in 12 major cities in North America. I started this project 7 years ago in Phoenix.

The most surprising stat? There are JUST AS MANY self-funded software companies with over 50 employees on Gregslist as VC-funded companies.

Yep. You heard that right.

Outside of Silicon Valley in North America, only 25% of all software companies ever take institutional “big” VC funding.

All the rest of these software companies have taken no outside funding (46%) or just a little angel or other “small” outside funding.

VC funding isn’t bad or wrong. And big funding has definitely powered some of the most successful global tech companies. I played that game for most of my career.

But…

IT IS A MYTH THAT BIG VC FUNDING IS THE ONLY GAME TO PLAY IF YOU WANT TO GROW A VALUABLE SOFTWARE COMPANY.

26% of the software companies that we track on Gregslist have more than 50 employees and NO OUTSIDE FUNDING AT ALL.

These aren’t scrappy, starving early startups. These are sizable and efficient software companies doing just fine. Some are quite big and growing steadily.

Are these “VC-scale” billion-dollar companies? Probably not.

But these bigger, practically-funded software companies are worth $30M, $75M, or more than $100M with “founder-scale” exit potential.

It’s a myth that you need big outside funding to grow a valuable software business that creates impact and becomes very valuable–for founders and their teams.

Big VC funding is a specific sport for a specific kind of founder that wants to bet it all to go really big. It usually doesn’t work, but there’s a chance.

We just don’t see the countless bootstrapped and practically-funded software companies because they don’t make the news.

And we don’t hear about when the founders walk away with $30M or $75M. That’s more than most VC funders win in the end too.

There are many ways to grow a successful software business.

#practicalfounders

Get the weekly Practical Founders email and podcast update.

Share Practical Founders

FREE 60-PAGE EBOOK

Win the Startup Game Without VC Funding

Learn how all 75 founders on the Practical Founders Podcast created an average founder equity value of $50 million.