Ulrik Bo Larsen, CEO & Founder, Falcon.io
Falcon.io: Not a hack but a growth journey
Ulrik Bo Larsen’s Falcon.io was acquired by Cision four months ago so everyone was excited to hear about the journey.
A lot of the tactics used by Falcon.io as experiments have since become more commonly spread – ”tools of the trade” as Morten Elk of SimpleSite later put it – some of which are definitely worth repeating:
Get the right sales staff and make inside sales work:
Ulrik hired an “Inside Sales Napoleon” in 2012 and proved that their inside sales model worked – although Falcon.io is a B2B SaaS product which at that time typically was sold via classic sales reps visiting each client.
The scalable business model led to a more aggressive market ambition. And allowed the company to have everyone work from one office in Copenhagen. At least for a start.
Cash flow strengthened by prepayments:
Falcon.io started to focus on getting annual prepayments – when you’re growing, that tactic really helps your cash flow compared to monthly payments. Simple, yet extremely effective.
Successfully and consistently landing annual prepaid SaaS contracts enabled Falcon.io to raise a very decent series A investment.
Win. Or die.
Another thing that fueled Falcon.io’s journey was the “go big or go home” notion: This game was not “the winner takes it all” but very few players would come out as winners. And the market was global, not regional or local. So the ambitions were high from the beginning – and the strategy and execution built on those ambitions.
When raising 20m EUR in VC funding you and your investors typically have a growth projection that you expect to develop as predicted – so the desired “hockey stick” materializes a few steps down the road.
Metrics rarely behave exactly like predicted. And hockey sticks are fragile.
However, Falcon.io track and analyse everything they do and have built thorough growth processes. So when some things went off track they could correct them quickly – see NGH#13 for a specific Falcon.io story on that – and that helped Ulrik & Co not run out of oxygen (i.e. cash!).
Watch the video for a full end-to-end story on Falcon.io from their initial years and up till now.