Mark Ferrier built the marketing agency TRAFFIKGROUP to more than $2 million of EBITDA before it was acquired by the private equity group Onex in an eight-figure exit. In this first of a two-part interview, Mark shares the story of how he got started in the marketing agency world and how a rift with his former partners left him on the wrong end of a $2 million lawsuit.
When Jon Cross founded Pondera Solutions in 2011, his goal was to reduce fraud in U.S. government programs like Medicaid and Unemployment Insurance. By 2020, Cross and his partners had built Pondera to more than $9 million in annual recurring revenue when they received an offer from Thomson Reuters for a reported $124 million.
In 2017 Lloyed Lobo and his partner, Alex Popa, founded Boast, a software application designed to simplify the process of applying for research and development tax credits. The bootstrapped company struck a chord with customers that found the process of applying for R&D tax credits cumbersome. By 2020 Lobo and Popa had built Boast to more than $5 million in revenue when they agreed to a $23 million majority recapitalization from Radian Capital.
At the age of 41, Rob Walling sold Drip, an email marketing software for enough money that he "would never have to work again".
His only problem? Figuring out what to do next.
In this special edition of Built to Sell Radio, we explore how to re-define your purpose and find happiness and fulfillment after you exit your business
Sarah Dusek and her husband started Under Canvass, which offered large-scale tented hotels (think “glamping”) outside national parks around the U.S.
The business got off to a successful start, and within five years, Dusek had four locations, which were collectively generating $3 million in EBITDA. Rather than sit still, Dusek decided she wanted to grow much larger and raised $16 million of capital made up of a combination of equity and mezzanine debt at a rate of 13%, which Dusek personally guaranteed.
The stress of having her entire net worth tied to her business eventually caught up to Dusek, and she decided to sell a majority stake of her business to a private equity group (KSL Capital). Dusek rolled 25% of her equity and stayed on as CEO. By the time she stepped down from her leadership role, Under Canvass was worth more than $100 million.