Maropost makes powerful and easy-to-use marketing software solutions that are enterprise-grade and helps to scale sales and follow-up efforts while subscribing to lean methodology.
Nathan Latka sat down with CEO of Maropost, Ross Paquette, to get his unique insights on the stellar success Maropost has had, all while being bootstrapped – a phenomenon in the SaaS industry. Key metrics include:
- 5,000 customers
- 1.7 billion dollar valuation
- Team of 305, with 125 engineers
Nathan Latka (00:00):
Hey folks. My guest today is Ross Paquette. He is building a company called Maropost.com. Launched, or at least earliest date I’ve got revenue data on, all the way back to 2016, 2017. Now scaling up. Now he took some capital from an outside partner and said, “You know what? I like the bootstrapped life much better.” He said, “You know what, I’m going to buy him back.” And he did it. Now he is continuing to scale. They’re doing M&A. One of the great bootstrapped success stories. Ross, welcome to the show.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (00:25):
Thanks so much for having me, Nathan.
Nathan Latka (00:26):
Okay. Did I get that right? When was founding year?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (00:32):
Jesus, what year are we now? It was 2011. Sorry.
Nathan Latka (00:35):
Ah, okay. Okay. So 2011. And then, for folks that have not heard of you before, just quickly, what do you guys do? What are you selling?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (00:42):
Yeah, absolutely. So we have a single solution that encompasses commerce cloud, marketing cloud, and service cloud. So effectively, eCommerce and retail, marketing automation, email, SMS, and then help desk. So live chat, chat bots, ticketing and so on. And our target market is mid-market eCommerce and retail businesses or organizations.
Nathan Latka (01:03):
Hot, very hot space. So do you remember the year you guys passed a million bucks in revenue?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (01:09):
Yeah, that would’ve been 2013, I guess.
Nathan Latka (01:12):
And what were you selling back then? Is it the same thing today or is it changing drastically?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (01:17):
Yeah. No, it was mostly email marketing and marketing automation. So we very quickly went from 300,000 in revenue, I guess that would’ve been 2013 actually, and then 2014, 3.3 million; 2016, if I’m not mistaken was 13.3 million; and then 26 million in 2017, if I’m not mistaken.
Nathan Latka (01:36):
Interesting. And then you told me on the last show, you broke 40,000,000 in 2019.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (01:40):
Yeah, correct. Yeah.
Nathan Latka (01:41):
Very cool. Okay. So how many of these companies or customers are you serving today?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (01:46):
Just shy of 5,000, actually. We should hit 5,000 in a couple of months.
Nathan Latka (01:51):
Holy cow. Okay. And average company is paying about what in terms of ARPU?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (01:56):
Probably about $1,800 per month.
Nathan Latka (01:59):
1800 a month. Okay. So, we can multiply those bad boys to get MRR?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (02:03):
If you want, yeah.
Nathan Latka (02:04):
About 9,000,000 in MRR?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (02:07):
Give or take, yeah.
Nathan Latka (02:09):
Maybe I’m a little bit-
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (02:09):
A little bit less.
Nathan Latka (02:10):
I’m a little bit over. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Let me ask you this way. Will you break 100 million bucks in AR this year, run rate?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (02:16):
Just shy of it, actually. Sorry. Yeah, just shy of it most likely.
Nathan Latka (02:22):
So you think by December 2022. So this year you’ll do about 8,300,000 in MRR that month.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (02:26):
Nathan Latka (02:28):
I love that. Okay. So now let’s reverse engineer from 100 million run rate, right? So you’re getting there a bunch of ways. First off, you’re preserving equity with some buybacks. You’re doing some acquisitions with M&A. Let’s talk about the funding strategy first. So you thought you wanted to raise and you did. What year was that and how much did you raise?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (02:43):
That was 2016 and we did an all secondary round for 37 million US, 50 million Canadian, if it was relevant.
Nathan Latka (02:50):
Okay, 37 million US and that was a hundred percent secondary to you or also early employees, investors?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (02:57):
Yeah. It was a combination. Everybody got a bonus and all that kind of stuff.
Nathan Latka (03:00):
Okay. Okay. And what valuation was that at?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (03:03):
Nathan Latka (03:05):
Did that feel fair at the time?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (03:07):
Yeah, it did. Yeah.
Nathan Latka (03:09):
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (03:09):
At the time. Yeah.
Nathan Latka (03:10):
Yeah. And that was post- or pre-?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (03:12):
Yeah. That there was technically no post- or pre- because it was all secondary, so.
Nathan Latka (03:17):
Okay. Got it. Got it. Got it.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (03:18):
Nathan Latka (03:19):
So we could take 37 of divided by 163, they bought about 20% of the business, 21.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (03:24):
Yeah, exactly. Yeah.
Nathan Latka (03:25):
Okay. And then you sort of casually said it felt good at the time. What happened?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (03:29):
Yeah. It’s easy to look back. It was all very positive. They were really great people, great groups, but coming from a fully-bootstrapped approach where the business is based on profitability and growth at the same time and not grow by all costs where effectively the founder being myself is gambling with the growth of the business, which is as I see it, we just really weren’t aligned from a philosophical perspective. But I don’t think that would’ve been any different with any other parties, frankly. I think it was just how the times were then from an investment standpoint and at least from the VC to startup VP firms, as well. And so for us, it just really didn’t make sense to continue down that path.
Nathan Latka (04:16):
Oh, what’s going on there YouTube? Good to see you guys. Now imagine this. You love watching these interviews with SaaS founders, but imagine if we took all of the valuation data out from over 2,807 interviews I’ve done, manually. Saves you a lot of time. While we’ve done this, we’ve built into the beautiful interface inside of Founderpath, check this out. I’ll show you how you can access this in a second. But you log in, you connect your Stripe account. You see your valuation real time. You can see what it changed over the past 88 days and even set goals for valuation this year. Now the secret to valuation is there’s many different ways to value a SaaS business. So the reason you’re going to see three or four different valuations inside of your Founderpath dashboard, this is all free by the way, is because depending on who’s doing the buying of your SaaS company, you’re going to get a different valuation.
Nathan Latka (05:05):
A VC’s going to pay a different valuation. Private equity firm is different. If you’re going to do a minority sale, that’s different. And if you sell the whole business, that’s a different valuation. You can see all those when I hover over here. So the teal is what a VC would pay. Yellow is what private equity and red is if you sold the whole thing outright. Now what’s cool about this is not built off random data. Again, you guys hear these interviews on YouTube. All these datas are built from real time, valuation data points, founders share with us on the show. So traction 1.2 million, seed round 3.7 raise. They sold 22% of their business. Go in here and filter by the event. Maybe you only want to see companies that have sold the whole business. Well, here are a bunch that have been acquired, the valuation and the multiple.
Nathan Latka (05:51):
Maybe you’re going out right now and you’re raising your seed round. Well, go in here and look at all this recent seed deals that went down, what they raised, what valuation they raised at, and what percent that they sold. There’s never been a larger data set of SaaS valuations than what you can get now inside of Founderpath. And we’re thrilled to bring it to you.
Nathan Latka (06:11):
All right, we’re going to go back to the YouTube video here in a second, but if you want to check this tool out, if you want to jump in and sign up, you can check it out for free to get your valuation at this link. This link, founderpath.com/products/valuations. Or if you go to founderpath.com and hover over products, click on, “Get your valuation here,” and go ahead and sign up to give it a whirl. Again, all that valuation data, live, right inside the platform. I hope to see you there. All right, let’s jump back into the interview.
Nathan Latka (06:41):
And so, a lot of people might right now be listening, thinking about raising capital or doing a secondary like you just described, but they’re really not sure what their first board meetings going to be like. You obviously didn’t like what you saw or heard in your first couple board meetings, otherwise you wouldn’t have bought them back out. So what were you expecting and what happened?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (06:59):
To be honest, that’s actually a great question because I had absolutely no idea. So no preparation whatsoever, very little from a content perspective. We were doing, again, I think about 16 million at the time with maybe 20 employees in the business. And I just had zero experience from that perspective. So it really wasn’t anything on that front. I think it was a combination of things that happened over the three year period that it was just like, “We better separate here. This is going to go sideways.” The business had gone from triple digit growth to single digit growth. So really nobody was happy across the board and I don’t take a salary or compensation. I do well with the company, as well. So I’m very focused on, again, continuing to build the business, not just, “Ross has got compensation coming from salary and options,” and all this kind of stuff, as well.
Nathan Latka (07:51):
So what did you do about it?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (07:54):
Nathan Latka (07:55):
So you didn’t obviously that pressure. It didn’t make a lot of sense. Right? So what did you do about it? You raised this capital, are they still on the cap table today?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (08:02):
No, no, no. So I bought them out or there’s a few more nuances to it, but yeah, we effectively decided on a figure. I went our separate ways and-
Nathan Latka (08:12):
Ross, come on, you think I’m just going to let you up hook by saying we decided a figure, how the hell do you come up with a figure? They just paid 160 million valuation. Can you convince them to sell them back at 1x? Or they’re going to say, “Ross, you got to give us a premium. Our capital was tied up for years.”
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (08:23):
No, no, there was nothing like that. It was just kind of what you said.
Nathan Latka (08:27):
Okay. So they’re like, “If we had put the same 37 million bucks in the stock market, we would’ve earned 10%. So give us 10% more than 37 million and you can have your 20% back?” Something like that?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (08:37):
Something like that? Yeah.
Nathan Latka (08:39):
All right. Fair enough. Okay. And then, so you get that deal done. Where did you get that money from, by the way? Was that all the money on the balance sheet?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (08:47):
Well, all the secondary funds, so effectively at the time I had just taken the capital, didn’t spend any of it, invested it and the money was just sitting there. And so I think we’re very fortunate in that regard to have done it all secondary round whereby we didn’t put all the money into the business, spend the money and now we’re like, “We’re totally screwed here.” On both sides.
Nathan Latka (09:07):
Yeah, no, that makes a ton of sense. Okay. Got it. So you do that in 2016. Before we talk about more recent capital news, let’s talk about product between 2017 and today. Right. So how has that evolved? Have you done any acquisitions?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (09:21):
Yeah. So we did the two acquisitions that you mentioned that we’ve spoken about before. So we acquired a company out of Australia called Neto back at the end of 2020, so right in the thick of Covid. And then acquired another, coincidentally Australian, business, as well, at the end of 2021. Clearly we have an affinity for Christmas deals and that was in the point of sales space called Retail Express. And so back to your question, which was, “How’s the product evolved.” We’ve had the same vision for the last six years, which was the unified again, commerce marketing automation and support solution. And so really we acquired those businesses to just help bolster a lot of the knowledge, a lot of the understanding, a lot of the nuances that come from retail and eCommerce that we just didn’t have the experience with. And so those have been very successful for us, especially as we’re continuing forward in our product strategy.
Nathan Latka (10:16):
How do you measure success of an acquisition?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (10:20):
Good question. The percentage of failures is so high. I think when you’re able to look back and say that the asset still has retained the value, or amplified the value of the overall business, that’s successful. Things aren’t always going to work out with the founders or with the previous leadership team. Things aren’t also always going to work out from a customer technology perspective. But I think if you can look back and say, “I would still do this 24 months later, 12 months later,” even for that matter, that’s really the key to the success side of things. And I don’t think that’s very common in all the examples that you and I have both seen over the years.
Nathan Latka (10:59):
No, I would agree. So Neto, how much AR were they doing when you bought them? Do you remember?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (11:05):
They were around just over 10 million USD.
Nathan Latka (11:09):
Okay. Got it. And bootstrapped?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (11:12):
No, they were owned by, this is all public information. Their majority shareholder story was Telstra. It’s an Australian Telco, so similar to AT&T or Verizon, but in Australia.
Nathan Latka (11:25):
And so was that an advantage or a disadvantage that they were owned by a big conglomerate?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (11:28):
I think it was actually, in a way, it was an advantage because Telstra’s a huge company. They were making changes effectively with the strategy that they were implementing that caused them to acquire or invest in business like that. So when a company that’s doing billions and billions of dollars in revenue is making a turn, a 10 million dollar revenue company is really not that important to them. They’re just thinking the strategy is different now. Let’s exit the investments that we’ve made across the board and move into the new direction we’re moving in. And I think everybody was very motivated to complete the transaction in a mutually beneficial way.
Nathan Latka (12:07):
And I guess when you look at how Ross likes to structure deals, of that total price that you paid for Neto, what percent was all cash upfront versus them taking a ride with you now and sitting on your cap table?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (12:18):
No, no, it was all cash.
Nathan Latka (12:20):
Oh, all cash.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (12:21):
Yeah. Our cap table is still myself and the employees. That’s it.
Nathan Latka (12:24):
Wow. That’s incredible. Okay. So 60 million, all cash upfront for Neto. Six x multiple.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (12:31):
Nathan Latka (12:31):
Interesting. And can you share those same metrics?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (12:34):
I’m sorry. That was in USD. So it’s a little less than that. It was closer to four x multiple.
Nathan Latka (12:38):
I see. I see USD. Okay, cool. And what about, by the way, you like 60 million. Retail Express, I think, was a 55 million deal. Same for the size, 10 million in revenue?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (12:47):
So a little bit smaller, but completely bootstrap and founder-owned and operated. And the founder there is now our managing director of Australia, New Zealand coincidentally.
Nathan Latka (12:57):
That’s super cool. And did you pay about the same multiple four to six x? Something like that?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (13:01):
Yeah. Something like that. Yeah.
Nathan Latka (13:03):
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (13:03):
But in his example, a big part of it was the partnership, continuing forward, having an aligned vision on the business. So, really excited to have him here. And he’s obviously a big advocate for us in Australia.
Nathan Latka (13:16):
So I’m keynoting SaaSiest here in a couple days and I said I want to put some of this at the front of my keynote and what I want to put there is, a lot of founders don’t know, this is going to sound very conceited, but I don’t know a better way to ask it. Founders don’t know how to get personally rich or wealthy without exiting, which they don’t want to do because it’s like selling your baby. You’re going to go do the same thing again. So what if there was a way to not sell your baby, but still generate personal wealth? The way you obviously can do that is via secondaries, dividends, things like that. Obviously, without sharing personal net worth and things you don’t want to share, but how have you built the business so you can extract personal wealth and build a great life?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (13:50):
So it goes back to my comment before, so I don’t have a salary. I don’t have a bonus. I don’t have anything. I have my ownership in the business. And if the business does well, I do well. So typically through dividends, as you just described. And we’ve been fortunate enough to build a strong performing business when it comes to cash flow and EBITDA and profitability. So that has really driven that side of the coin. Granted, that’s not very common, certainly not in the tech spaces we’ve seen, most companies are burning through capital. So I think it takes that unique focus on ensuring that a profitable business is a part of the strategy, as well. So as in, it’s great to grow 50% year over year in my opinion, but it’s also great to have a 40% or 50% even a margin or on the cash flow side of things.
Nathan Latka (14:37):
You’re doing 50% EBITA margins right now, last year?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (14:40):
Yeah. About 52. Yeah.
Nathan Latka (14:42):
This is insane. Guys, I’m laughing. I’m laughing, because this isn’t small-scale we’re talking about. I think you guys had a $63 million or revenue USD last year. Something like that, right? He’s like, “Yes, yes.” Right. So 53%. You guys do the math, 53%. Now Ross, obviously that whole dividend, that’s not all coming out of business. It’s not all personally your money, but-
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (15:01):
We use it for the acquisitions, and so on. Yeah.
Nathan Latka (15:04):
Yeah. But then you also, obviously even you paid a dividend, do you structure it in a way where it’s weighted? So for example, if employees own 10% of the business, you own 90%, you’re going to pay out 10 million in profits. It’s split evenly like that?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (15:16):
No, we don’t have any shareholders except for myself. So we have option holders like everybody else. And we’re very generous with that side because we want people to enjoy in the journey that we’re going down, but they are nonetheless still option holders.
Nathan Latka (15:29):
So I guess my question would be, if you, Ross, as founder, pay yourself a dividend, which I love, you should, it’s a great way to build wealth and this is why you start a company in the first place, is for freedom. Do you enable the employees to sell back options to the company at a certain price that can-
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (15:45):
Nathan Latka (15:45):
Okay, got it. So how will they get liquidity long term?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (15:49):
They would get it when we hit an exit event. So in our case, when we go public or via public listing or direct listing or an IPO, that is our path. Alternatively, most other companies are trying to sell themselves so that would be their liquidity event. But for us, that is the specific path we’re heading down.
Nathan Latka (16:06):
Oh, Ross, I think you would be a terrible public company’s CEO. Because it’s not your personality at all.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (16:12):
Yeah. I’m not interested in that, either. And that’s not my goal. That’s different. My goal is more to retain 80% of the business and be able to operate from a product perspective or a vision perspective and really be supportive to somebody like that. I don’t aspire to be the CEO of public company.
Nathan Latka (16:28):
I say that in a joking way, but that’s a compliment.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (16:29):
Nathan Latka (16:30):
You don’t fit the mold. Right. You’re doing things a very different way, which I think is frankly healthy. But my question still stands though. So if you don’t want an IPO, you don’t want to exit, you want to keep 80%, grow it yourself. How-
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (16:41):
No, we do, we do want an IPO, or we do want go public. That’s the goal.
Nathan Latka (16:44):
Oh, you do want an IPO.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (16:46):
Right. But I don’t aspire to be the CEO of that public company. After a few years, I will, of course either bring somebody in from outside or have somebody elevate within the organization and we’re positioning ourselves even now for those stages.
Nathan Latka (17:01):
I see. Okay. Very cool. Now the reason we’re recording, this is two-fold. One is that I wanted your story ahead of SaaSiest because you’re actually doing some deals in Sweden, and in the Nordics. But second is, I think you did recently a secondary so update us. What did you recently do?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (17:14):
Yeah. It’s still ongoing right now, so I’m not even sure if I should share this, but we’re doing a secondary round at a 1.7 billion valuation.
Nathan Latka (17:25):
I love this. Okay. So just for people that don’t know what a secondary is, can you explain it in maybe two, three sentences?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (17:30):
Yeah, absolutely. So secondary is, it is providing liquidity to the shareholders as opposed to directing funds right into the business in terms of primary.
Nathan Latka (17:40):
Yep. So if we take, what are you doing right now at MRR? Six-
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (17:43):
I have to look yeah.
Nathan Latka (17:46):
Six-ish? Six million.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (17:48):
Just shy of that.
Nathan Latka (17:49):
Something around six. Yeah. So that would put you right now at a run rate, whatever, what is that? 72 million dollar run rate. Right?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (17:55):
It’s just under 60.
Nathan Latka (17:58):
Under 60. Okay, cool. So I’m trying to back into your multiple, right? So was it a competitive process and that’s been enabling you to drive up multiple?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (18:06):
Not really. We’ve gone with a much wider net, so there’s not just one or two or even five parties involved. There’s more than 50. We’ve taken a bit of a different approach to this because we have a lot of people who have been involved in the business for years, have been customers in the business, partners in the business, employees, family members, friends. This was their opportunity really to enter into the effectively, wouldn’t be the cap table again, but effectively enter into an investment that they can join the journey over the next few years as we head to our public listing, as well.
Nathan Latka (18:38):
And so what do you think the size of the secondary will be? 50 million? 10 million. A hundred million.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (18:43):
Yeah. Probably close to 50 million.
Nathan Latka (18:45):
50 million. Okay. Interesting. So this is a way for partners, friends, supporters, marketing agency owners who love you to death and sell out of Maropost to buy in pre-IPO.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (18:58):
Nathan Latka (18:59):
Interesting. Super interesting. How do all your other IPO metrics- Rule of 40? You good?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (19:05):
Yeah. We’re good on that one. Yeah. Absolutely.
Nathan Latka (19:07):
Net dollar retention?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (19:08):
Can’t remember the actual, yeah. This year will be well above 150%.
Nathan Latka (19:14):
Okay. That’s world class. I’m trying to think, revenue per employee?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (19:18):
Revenue per employee is just over 200 right now, but it’ll be significantly higher. We’ve been staffing up. Yeah. Much like other companies are, aggressively.
Nathan Latka (19:27):
Well, so sorry. That number will go down because you’re adding head count.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (19:31):
No, no, no. So we’ve added the headcount. We’re already in that process, right now, but we’ve staffed up for a much higher revenue multiple at the end of the year.
Nathan Latka (19:37):
Which is great because you’re already above average. Most public trade companies it’s about 129,000 average revenue for employee. You’re already at 200, Rule of 40, rule of whatever, higher, and net dollar retention is already world class at one 150.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (19:48):
Yeah. We’re targeting about over 300, 300, 350 on the employee side of things.
Nathan Latka (19:53):
I just love that you track it. I never talked to a pre-IPO founder that’s even tracking revenue. It’s not even a thought, unfortunately. So I think that’s great. I guess we’ll wrap up on this. That net dollar retention surprises me because you’re selling to mid-market. These aren’t enterprise deals, necessarily. How have you been to be able to get, how have you been able to keep gross turn low, and then also cross-sell enough to get up to 150 net?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (20:16):
Yeah. So the key element of the platform is people are usually coming in though one of the areas of the platform. So one of the three or the four arguably is e-commerce retail, marketing, or service clouds. And so they’re coming in through one of those and then we’re cross-selling them over the rest of the platform. So if anything, 150 is probably generous because somebody could easily come into service cloud and maybe they’re using a Shopify or they’re using a Klaviyo for marketing, and that’s fine. And then we cross-sell them into those solutions and all of a sudden, what was a $1000 a month customer is now a $4,000 a month customer. And those other areas of the solution are of significantly higher, maybe not cost base, but value for the business overall.
Nathan Latka (21:01):
That makes a ton of sense. And what’s the full team size today? How many people?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (21:06):
Nathan Latka (21:07):
- And how many of those are engineers?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (21:10):
Nathan Latka (21:13):
Okay. So heavy there, as expected. How many sales reps that carry a quota?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (21:17):
Nathan Latka (21:18):
Interesting. Why do you say, “only”?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (21:21):
Because usually the numbers would be the other way around to what I just described. So you’d have a hundred people in sales, at a minimum, and then marketing be another 50 or 60 even. And then the rest trickles down through support and client success and development and so on.
Nathan Latka (21:38):
Ross, this is a hell of a story man, I’m rootin’ for you. Let’s wrap up here with the famous five. Number one, favorite business book?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (21:44):
Favorite business book? Elon Musk’s autobiography.
Nathan Latka (21:48):
By the way, he has 9.2% of Twitter. Is he going to take over the whole of thing or what?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (21:54):
Yeah, I don’t think so. No.
Nathan Latka (21:54):
So number two, is there a CEO you’re following or studying?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (22:00):
Probably him, to be honest with you. It’s not like I’m a fan or anything. I should say, I’m not a fan, but I’m not a fan in particular. I just really appreciate the hard work and I can obviously sympathize with the fact that it takes so much of that to get to where he is been. Maropost is of course incomparable to Tesla in any way, shape or form, but we certainly hard-worked our way to a lot of our successes.
Nathan Latka (22:21):
Number three. What’s your favorite online tool for building Maropost, besides your own?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (22:26):
Good question. Honestly, probably Microsoft Office. They’ve just done a great job.
Nathan Latka (22:33):
Tried and true. Number four. How many hours of sleep do you get every night?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (22:37):
Nathan Latka (22:38):
Six, cause you have a new one, so that’s impressive. Six hours is pretty good. Actually.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (22:42):
I’ve been lucky to maintain that. To be honest with you. I’ve been talking a lot about it. Yeah.
Nathan Latka (22:46):
I forget, first kid or is this second or third?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (22:49):
First kid. Yeah. And a week old.
Nathan Latka (22:50):
Wow. Well, hey congratulations, man. So my email was right on when I said, “I think the babies due.” It was literally like-
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (22:56):
Yeah, exactly. Yeah. It was last Friday or sorry, Friday before last.
Nathan Latka (23:00):
So I was only two days late about it. That’s great.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (23:02):
Two days late. Exactly.
Nathan Latka (23:03):
It’s amazing. All right. And how old are you, Ross?
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (23:06):
Nathan Latka (23:06):
- Last question. Something you wish you knew when you were 20.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (23:10):
Something I wish I knew it was when I was 20. Jesus. Good question. I wish I knew how hard it would be to get to this point.
Nathan Latka (23:23):
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (23:24):
I think at the time it seemed very easy and it wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be.
Nathan Latka (23:28):
Not an easy journey, guys. Maropost launched back in 2011, 2012, 2013. It did 300K in revenue in 2013, 3.4 million, 2014. Fast forward to 2016 to 13.3 million and sold 37 million bucks worth of capital on 163 million valuations. So sold 20% of the business and said, you know what? “I don’t like these board meetings with other investors. I want to buy them back.” He did.
Nathan Latka (23:49):
Now the company, basically him and employees, own a hundred percent of the business. They’ve scaled up to 60 million bucks in ARR, serving over 5,000 customers. 52% EBITA profit margin last year and now are raising call between 50 and 60, 70 million bucks in a secondary, at a 1.7 billion dollar valuation, about a 28 x multiple. This is how you build a great SaaS company, keep control and build a great life as he welcomes his first little one into the world. Ross. Thanks for taking us to the top.
Maropost CEO Ross Paquette (24:15):
Yeah. Thanks so much, Nathan.