Episode from the podcast
SaaS Interviews with CEOs, Startups, Founders
EP 484: $7M Raised with StartEngine CEO and CrowdFunding SnapWire CEO
Released Sunday, 20th November 2016
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Ron Miller, CEO of StartEngine,who was in Episode 40 of The Top and Chad Newell, CEO and founder of Snapwire. Listen as Ron and Chad explain how the new rule of SEC in equity crowdfunding helped their companies.
Favorite Book? – Ron: The E-Myth
What CEO do you follow? –
Chad: Sean Malarkey
Favorite online tool? — Ron:
Internal Email / Chad: Google Sheet
Do you get 8 hours of sleep?— Ron: No
If you could let your 20-year old self know one thing, what would it be? – “It’s all about confidence.” – Ron Miller
Time Stamped Show Notes:
01:40 – Nathan introduces Ron and Chad to the show
02:30 – StartEngine is the nation’s leading platform that allows entrepreneurs to directly connect with potential investors to raise capital
02:45 – The new law opened up the possibility for everyone to become an investor
03:11 – It allows companies to advertise broadly
03:24 – StartEngine was launched in June 2015
03:30 – Total amount invested is $20 million
03:42 – 60,000 unique users have joined their community
04:00 – StartEngine charged 5% of the total capital from the proceeds raised
04:20 – Entrepreneur can raise up to $50 million a year in the online public offering and StartEngine charges $50 per investor
05:10 – “We are currently focusing on the US market and there’s no SaaS in there”
05:30 – What made Chad decide to use StartEngine
06:40 – Why StartEngine is ground-breaking
07:00 – The congress’ limitation on investing in a company
07:31 – “Real wealth is made by being an early investor”
07:54 – The new law is a radical shift
08:51 – Nathan believes that the best investors are customers
09:10 – Snapwire has 300,000 photographers in the platform
09:22 – Buyer ratio is much smaller than the photographers
09:45 – Snapwire has pay-as-you-go and a SaaS model
10:08 – Snapwire’s revenue is 50% from pay-as-you-go and 50% from SaaS
10:20 – 9,000 images have been bought in Snapwire since their launch
10:30 – Snapwire was founded in 2014
10:34 – Snapwire has raised $2.8 million
11:15 – Snapwire raising in StartEngine opened up a lot of opportunities
11:45 – Can you use StartEngine after a price round?
11:52 – The main advantage is that companies can set their terms
12:03 – Some companies have to essentially create a second priced or non-priced round
12:58 – The good thing about equity crowdfunding is you have to disclose everything
13:08 – Disclosure statement is clear
13:41 – Lawsuits and CAP table
14:10 – There’s a disclosure and subscription agreement that investors sign
14:30 – “I think there’s an immersion of risk”
16:14 – There are limits to investments and to returns
16:28 – During crowdfunding, there’s also a limit on the amount of investment that a company will accept
17:00 – “As far as information rights, you can be very clear in the disclosure”
18:00 – It is not allowed to give out public information even if it is unintentional
18:15 – Upon investing, you will get a shareholder report that is in compliance with security exchange commission requirements
18:40 – “Competition can’t reverse engineer your strategy in execution”
19:06 – StartEngine has 12,000 – 14,000 investors
19:20 – Total of 15-18 companies have raised in StartEngine
19:30 – 14 team size in StartEngine
19:36 – StartEngine raised capital through seed round and Series A
19:47 – Total of $7.7 million raised
- Ron didn’t use their platform to raise
20:25 – Average value of an investment is $1400
20:40 – StartEngine’s biggest competitors are Seed Invest, Next Seed, WeFunder and Flash Funder
21:11 – What should people look for in the marketplace?
21:23 – If certain companies are establishing themselves in a specific niche area
21:43 – Success rate of the companies
21:57 – Support the companies can provide to entrepreneurs
22:13 – Connect with Ron through his email
22:34 – Contact Chad at
24:53 – The Famous Five
3 Key Points:
Real wealth is made by being an early investor.
The good thing about equity crowdfunding is the disclosure.
Be confident in yourself.
Nathan found his development team using Toptal for his new business Send Later. He was able to keep 100% equity and didn’t have to hire a co-founder due to the quality of Toptal developers.
The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible.
The site Nathan uses to manage his invoices and accounts.
The drag and drop tool Nathan uses to quickly create his webinar landing pages which convert at 35%+
Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books.
Assistant.to – The site Nathan uses to book meetings with one email.
Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
Drip – Nathan uses Drip’s email automation platform and visual campaign builder to build his sales funnel.
– Ron’s email address
– Chad’s email address
Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives
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From The Podcast
SaaS Interviews with CEOs, Startups, Founders
What if you knew data behind the fastest growing SaaS companies today? Each morning join Nathan Latka as he spends 15 minutes interviewing SaaS founders. You'll learn how SaaS CEO's launched their startup and grew it into a real SaaS business. SaaS Founders range from bootstrapped to funded, MVP to 10,000 customers, pre revenue to pre IPO.
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