SaaStr Podcast #130: Steve Loughlin, Partner @ Accel Shares How Founders Can Determine Which Is The Right Market For Them
Welcome to Episode 130! Steve Loughlin is a Partner at Accel in San Francisco, one of the leading funds with prior investments in the likes of Facebook, Dropbox, Atlassian, Slack, and many more incredible companies. Prior to Accel, Steve was the CEO and co-founder of RelateIQ, later named SalesforceIQ following the acquisition of the company by Salesforce in 2014 for $390 million. Steve was also president and CEO of Affinity Circles, a professional social network that connected more than 18 million professionals. Steve has also advised or invested in the likes of Palantir Technologies, Addepar, and Roam Analytics.
In today’s episode you will learn:
* How Steve made his way into the world of SaaS with the founding of RelateIQ and then came to be a Partner at Accel on the other side of the table.
* Why does Steve believe the hardest balance a founder has to consider is the balance between building for the future and building for the present? How can this short to long term dichotomy be considered effectively by the team?
* RelateIQ was early to the AI/ML landscape. What does Steve think they did so right with RelateIQ? Does Steve agree that for an enterprise ML play to be interesting it must fundamentally change the go to market strategy?
* What were the key learnings from working so closely with Marc Benioff on the Salesforce exec team? What is it about the internal structure and operations of Salesforce that make it the massively profitable behemoth that it is today?
* Having been a founder himself and now a VC, how does Steve look to help founders specifically? Where has Steve found that early stage founders need the most help? Where do VCs proclaim to help the most but really do not at all?
60 Second SaaStr:
* What is the worst advice Steve often hears being given?
* What is something that Steve has changed his mind radically on over the last few years?
* What is Steve’s favourite SaaS reading material?
* What does Steve know now that he wishes he had known at the beginning?
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