European SaaS Exits – my talk from SaaStock


screenshot-2016-09-09-11-40-36The inaugural SaaStock event took place in Dublin today. For a first time event, it was extremely high quality. Great speakers from both sides of the Atlantic sharing deep, actionable insights on succeeding in SaaS.

I gave a talk on achieving meaningful SaaS exits. I looked at actual data on SaaS exits then moved on to general tips for generating meaningful exits no matter where your business is.

Here are my slides…

Exits in Canada: August 2016

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As expected given the time of year, August was a slow month for IT exits in Canada with 5 deals closed (3 last month). However, an additional 5 deals were announced in the month (but not closed yet) including BCE’s purchase of Q9 Networks for $ 491M USD. So, perhaps that’s a good sign as we all get back to work.

Here are the highlights for the closed deals last month: Continue reading Exits in Canada: August 2016

Exits in Canada: June 2016

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June was yet another ‘meh’ month for software acquisitions in Canada.  Highlights:

  • 8 deals announced (9 last month)
  • 2 of the deals had a disclosed value (Largest was $ 32.5M).
  • 3 of the companies were in Toronto, 2 in Montreal, the rest were distributed
  • None of the companies were VC-backed
  • 3 of the buyers were Canadian, 3 were from the US, and 1 each for Europe and Asia
  • 4 of the buyers were public
  • Median time to exit: 15 years (9 years for last months’ deals)
  • Shortest time to exit: 4 years
  • Longest time to exit: 25 years!
  • All of the buyers except one was strategic.

I will be doing a separate post on the IT exits so far this year in Canada. So far, it’s been a pretty underwhelming with some exceptions (Wind Mobile and Bitstrips).

As always, I report on these each month. If you’re interested in seeing the underlying data, I keep it here.

Why you need to talk to corporate development

Paul Graham, co-founder of YCombinator, is a smart dude. Founders rightfully listen to what he has to say. One of his many pearls of wisdom is that founders should NOT talk to corporate development groups. Having spent the last 3 days in SF doing pretty much nothing but talking to corp dev groups, all I can say is Paul is wrong. Here’s why:

First, the vast majority of exits happen through acquisition. Less than 10% of exits are from companies going public.  Continue reading Why you need to talk to corporate development