Startup Stories - What Resonated With Our Investors (Part 3)

Startup Stories - What Resonated With Our Investors (Part 3), Irelands answer to Dropbox and Github for scientific data, recently convinced big international VCs and powerful angel investors to band together to support it with significant seed funding. Here, CEO Fin Murray, finishes up explaining what seemed to resonate with investors.

Clear niche

Well we had a clearly identifiable market and we had plenty of stats – top down and bottom up – on the size of the market. 

We had a minimum viable product that over the space of 3-4 months had patently evolved as a result of user feedback.

We had a team. Big time! We were able to show that we had put together a compelling blend of experience – people who knew how to distribute and sell software worldwide, scientists who were the cream of the crop in their fields attending the pre-eminent Science and research university in the world, University of Cambridge: People that were living with the problems of data management in a world where data generation is growing exponentially.

We quickly brought on a top class technical team who are to all intents and purposes early founders who were able to take an MVP ‘concept’ of ‘for scientists by scientists’ and actually turn the scientists vision into robust, well designed and secure software product capable of being scaled.

Routes to market

And importantly, we were able to show that we understood distribution and the distribution mix.

In our team we have people that have sold into large corporates through tier one distributors; that understand account management, business development and managing tenders. At the same time we have shown an ability to get product out to individual users using online, growth hacking and old fashioned telesales. Our investors told us that it was our understanding in particular of sales and especially enterprise sales and distribution that added to the overall compellability of the story.

And we did have distribution. By the time we had fully engaged with investors we had very large distributors on the hook and excited about how we fit their overall solution strategy. And they referenced us as part of investor DD. This gave us credible and immediate world-wide footprint.

Last but not least, there is no doubt that there’s a ‘new’ way of building and selling software that’s being elucidated by a blogging industry emanating from Silicon Valley. And to stay topical we read it and strove to understand it. However we also used the ’tried and tested' in our narrative – revenues, selling, routes to market, charging customers, business plans, the (old fashioned) marketing mix – product, price, place and promotion…



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