This is the last of a six-episode series with Trilogy Search Partners focused on Search, Search-backed acquisitions, and small business operations. Today we have a great conversation with Stijn Hendrikse, an operating partner at Trilogy.
As an author of T2D3.pro, serial entrepreneur, and marketing leader, Stijn has contributed to the success of 10+ startups as a C-level executive, including the Chief Revenue Officer of Acumatica and CEO of MightyCall, a SaaS contact center solution.
Stijn founded Kalungi – the global leading Growth-as-a-Service provider focused solely on B2B SaaS companies, and Amy.us, an AI-powered conversation platform that allows small business owners to service their customers better.
Before focusing on startups, Stijn led global SMB Marketing and B2B Product Marketing for Microsoft’s Office platform.
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(1:53) – Breaking down the SAAS business model
(4:22) – What are some of the SAAS companies and marketing teams you’ve been a part of over your career?
(7:20) – What led you to ultimately work with Search Funds?
(11:22) – What kinds of companies do you encourage Searchers to look for?
(13:50) – How do you value the effectiveness of a marketing function in a company?
(20:03) – Where can early CEOs improve on pricing?
(25:58) – Do you recommend any proactive communication cadence with customers?
(30:45) – How do you start developing a high-performing marketing function?
(33:38) – When does bringing on a fractional CMO make sense?
(35:24) – What’s the best mix long-term for in-house marketing vs. outsourcing?
(37:36) – How do you find the right person to grow within your marketing function
(42:17) – What strategies do successful CEOs use to help get teams behind their vision?
(43:49) – What’s really important to know about the Ideal Customer Profile?
(48:25) – How do you develop an effective outbound campaign?
(57:36) – How incoming CEOs can add value
Think Like an Owner Sponsors:
Live Oak Bank — Live Oak Bank is a seasoned SMB lender providing SBA and conventional financing for search funds, independent sponsors, private equity firms, and individuals looking to acquire lower middle-market companies. Live Oak has closed billions of dollars in SBA financing and is actively looking to help more small company investors across the country. If you are in the process of acquiring a company or thinking about starting a search, contact Lisa Forrest or Heather Endresen directly to start a conversation or go to www.liveoakbank.com/think.
Hood & Strong, LLP — Hood & Strong is a CPA firm with a long history of working with search funds and private equity firms on diligence, assurance, tax services, and more. Hood & Strong is highly skilled in working with search funds, providing quality of earnings and due diligence services during the search, along with assurance and tax services post-acquisition. They offer a unique way to approach acquisition diligence and manage costs effectively. To learn more about how Hood & Strong can help your search, acquisition, and beyond, please email one of their partners Jerry Zhou at [email protected]
Oberle Risk Strategies– Oberle is the leading specialty insurance brokerage catering to search funds and the broader ETA community, providing complimentary due diligence assessments of the target company’s commercial insurance and employee benefits programs. Over the past decade, August Felker and his team have engaged with hundreds of searchers to provide due diligence and ultimately place the most competitive insurance program at closing. Given August’s experience as a searcher himself, he and his team understand all that goes into buying a business and pride themselves on making the insurance portion of closing seamless and hassle-free.
If you are under LOI, please reach out to August to learn more about how Oberle can help with insurance due diligence at oberle-risk.com. Or reach out to August directly at [email protected].
Oakbourne Advisors– Oakbourne is an independent retirement plan consulting firm that helps small companies design and implement great retirement plans for their teams. Whether you already have a 401(k) in place or are looking to start one for your team, please reach out to learn more about how Oakbourne can set your people up for success in retirement at oakbourne.com/think.