Everybody Lies 2016: SaaS Revenues in the Inc. 5000

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Jason Lemkin

Four years ago, we formally kicked off the SaaStr blog with our very first blog post, “Everybody Lies”.  It took a deep dive on the Inc 5000 list, which requires companies to provide and share GAAP revenues to win the award.

In SaaS, everybody lies a little.  Bookings instead of MRR.  ARR instead of GAAP (well, everyone does this).  cMRR instead of MRR.  Whatever.

But we can actually learn the real #s, at least 2015 GAAP revenues and trailing growth numbers, from Inc. for some SaaS companies.  Real, honest, legit, oftentimes audited revenues for the past year.

Let’s take a look at the ’16 list.  It’s not as interesting as years past — Hubspot submitted data back in ’12, but most SaaS companies you’ve heard of didn’t seem to participate.  So it’s not as useful as it was 4 years ago, before we had any SaaS IPOs and things were more opaque.  But there are still some good learnings here:

  • Cirruspath at #41, with $6.6m in ’15 GAAP revenue.  Let’s call that $10m ARR at 12/31/15, so maybe ending this year at $20m+.  We hear a lot about ToutApp, Salesloft, Outreach, Yesware, etc.  It’s interesting so many players can achieve eight figures in ARR.
  • Nutanix at #86 with $241m in ’15 GAAP revenue.  OK Nutanix isn’t really SaaS, it’s software enhanced storage.  But they’re one of the next IPO candidates, so good to see another strong one like Twilio.
  • Hireology at $3.6m in 2015 GAAP revenue.  OK, not a rocketship, but HR and hiring are one of the largest spaces in software.  Let’s call that $5m ARR at 12/15.
  • Leadpages at $16.2m in 2015 GAAP revenue.  Not too shabby for Minneapolis SaaS!
  • Kabbage at $97.5m in 2015 GAAP revenue.  Boom!
  • Movable Ink at $18m in 2015 GAAP revenue.  Great CEO here and NYC SaaS player.  Let’s call that ~$22m+ ARR at 12/31/15 and a $30m+ ARR target this year.  Email is Forever!
  • Pipedrive at $9m in 2015 GAAP revenue and growing quickly.   I’m an investor (more on why I invested at $1m ARR here).  Will be at $20m+ ARR before you know it.  Learning?  Plenty of room in CRM.  More on that here.
  • WePay at $57m in 2015 GAAP revenue.
  • Parse.ly at $4m in 2015 GAAP revenue.  Glad to see them continue to crank here.
  • Nearpod at $3.3m in 2015 GAAP revenue.  Congrats to my ex-colleagues at Storm Ventures on this investment.  Edtech SaaS.
  • Pagerduty at $28m in 2015 GAAP revenue.  So let’s call that up to $40m ARR by 12/31/15.  Pretty solid.  Assuming they exit this year at $60m+ in ARR.  An IPO candidate in few years.  Cool!
  • Our friends at Lighter Capital at $4.4m in 2015 GAAP revenues.  Not SaaS, helping SaaS companies, but great to see.
  • Sauce Labs at $14.3m in 2015 GAAP revenues.  Software testing is a huge space.  More on why we invested in an adjacent player, RainforestQA, here.
  • Pluralsight at $108m in 2015 GAAP revenues.  Boom!  Another Utah pre-nicorn and IPO candidate.  Not one that has chased a lot of PR, but corporate learning is a big F500 expense, usually ~1.5% of revenues.  Bootstrapped and started in 2004 … bootstrapping does take longer.  But it’s great when it works.
  • Contently at $14.8m in 2015 GAAP revenues.
  • Twilio at $166m in 2015 GAAP revenues after being founded in 2008.  OK, we all knew this post-IPO, but this is the way to do it.  Come see the CEO, Jeff Lawson, speak at the ’17 SaaStr Annual.
  • DoubleDutch at $12.8m in 2015 GAAP revenues.  Watch our fun video with DoubleDutch here:

  • CBInsights at $6.8m in 2015 GAAP revenues.  The CEO will be speaking at the ’17 Annual on learnings bootstrapping to $10m ARR And Beyond.  This will be a good talk.
  • Malwarebytes with $69.3m in 2015 GAAP revenues.  Virus detection isn’t dead, it just evolves.
  • Yext at $89.2m in 2015 GAAP revenues.

I will note that at ~$6m in GAAP revenues this year, SaaStr plans to enter this competition next year.

Published on August 18, 2016
  • Matt Parker

    Thanks for putting this list together!

  • jpwerlin

    Only real numbers from us at PipelineDeals for the last 3 years no need to fudge as it only has downside in reality. Agreed CRM is wide open.

  • Louis Camassa

    Awesome, thanks for sharing. There’s an additional list with different SaaS companies that Nathan Latka put together here: http://nathanlatka.com/11-saas-companies-reveal-mrr-saas-metrics/

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