I know those hot start-ups seem to be lapping you,
Raising bigger rounds
You should worry
But here’s the thing
UiPath took 10 years to get to $1m ARR. It’s worth $10B.
Procore took 10 years to take off, only once mobile emerged. It’s worth $8B.
— Jason ✨BeKind✨ Lemkin #ДобісаПутіна (@jasonlk) April 6, 2022
So three of my personal favorite SaaS companies went public, Squarespace, Procore, and UiPath.
Squarespace is a personal favorite (and one we run many SaaStr sites on) because it took a category of software that was a commodity and often a free give-away and made it magical. Procore is a personal favorite because it did vertical SaaS the hard way, with many mid-market deals, and made it a tenacious success. UiPath is a more recent favorite. My interest there is more technical — how it was able to take a quiet corner of software (scripts, really) and turn it eventually into one of the fastest-growing software companies of all time.
Squarespace and Procore are both now worth about $8 Billion. And UiPath is worth $40B.
One thing these very, very different, incredibly successful SaaS companies have in common: it took like forever to get really big. 😉
Procore was founded way back in 2002 to automate construction project management. But took a full decade for mobile to get mature enough to make construction software really work, because it had to work in the field. Procore didn’t really begin to take off until 2012:
Squarespace was founded way back in 2003 in the CEO’s dorm room, and for years revenue was nominal. It took 3 years just to get to $1M in ARR and 7+ years to get to the first $10M ARR. But today, it’s at an incredible $700,000,000+ in ARR!! More on that here.
Maybe the real point is that these 3 different software companies are so different. Squarespace is self-service and SMB focused. Procore is vertical SaaS and mid-market (and above). UiPath is hyper-enterprise ($1m+ customers) and really on-prem software for the Cloud.
They have almost nothing in common but 1 thing — incredibly tenacious, visionary founders.
That were OK in the end if it took 15-20 years to IPO and build something worth billions.