This SaaS Founder Had to Wind Down His Software Startup

Many startup experiments don’t end up growing big and winning a big prize for founders. Failure is actually a possibility, however you define it.

The lessons learned can be just as powerful as the success stories.

Many VC-funded software companies crash and burn when growth stops. Bootstrapped companies often manage their product wind-downs more politely, but it’s still difficult.

This week on the Practical Founders Podcast, practical founder Ryan Goodman shares his story of bootstrapping his add-on product startup company quickly to $1.5 million.

Then three negative shifts happened at the same time: technology, ecosystem partners, and “feature absorption.” This happened just as fast.

They invested to pivot and they tried some new strategies, but it was too late. They couldn’t recover.

They wound down the product business profitably over a three-year period to honor their commitments to their 700 customers and 8 employees.

They didn’t crash and burn quickly like many VC-funded flameouts, but it was still difficult and emotionally painful.

Ryan openly shares his story, looking back in hindsight:

  •  Why couldn’t they recover from these market changes?
  •  What did it feel like to go through a wind-down?
  •  What would he have done differently?
  •  Does he have any regrets?

Ryan is a Practical Founders Podcast listener himself. He reached out to me to share his story and pass on his insights and lessons.

This year I’ll be adding more stories from founders who didn’t get to a successful end to their startup story.

Their hard lessons are just as useful for practical founders as their many success stories.

Listen to the in-depth interview with Ryan at practicalfounders dot com or use the link in the comment below.


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