We were able to start 2017 with a new sense of purpose. We had money. For the first time really, there was money in the bank account. We didn't have to only buy expired Kloud beer from ISIS liquor anymore - though by then we'd acquired the taste for it so we continued to - and we could hire! Grow the team! Pay ourselves [just over minium wage]! What a joy.
So we did, we grew!
- Feb 2017 - Erwin
- March 2017 - Anna, Mandy
- April 2017 - Blake
We'd hit double figures in the team! We weren't all men!
The flurry of joy and change was an upward spiral of self-fulfilling excitement. We grew and got happier and got happier and grew.
The corrogated iron walls of our dear Conqa office could hold us no longer, and so we moved!
We thanked its extreme cold and extreme heat in extreme style. I believe Jesse set up every screen we had to play asynchronous strobe lights. My jeans split at the bum, and somehow we broke two lights.
Were we grown up? It was hard to tell (it wasn't; we weren't). But we were in a much more grown up office. It had a lift! Gone were the years of walking up the 4 flights of stairs.
The team, the customer base and the revenue continued to grow. We also started to travel to Australia more to investigate the market and to make start selling the product. We definitely weren't there to party a lot, and we certainly wouldn't do meetings hungover.
I don't know if it was cause we'd just run into Awen Guttenbeil (Luke's first customer) and subsequently watched the video of him making the biggest NRL hit of ALL TIME, but we we knew we could draw a line in the sand, and make something special happen. MDD (Million Dollar Day) was borne. 21 October 2017.
In start up speak, $1M ARR is 'impossible.' Statistically speaking, to hit $1,000,000 in recurring revenue happens to almost no start up businesses.
We were doing $30K MRR, or $360,000 in ARR, so the goal was audaciously to nearly triple the business in 4 months.
On one of our trips to Aus, we'd had a very promising meeting with Fulton Hogan, in which their statewide Quality Manager was interested in what we were doing. That helped our confidence too, and then, driving along the freeway after meeting them for about the fourth time, on a beautiful autumnal Melbourne day, Ajith called to confirm they would pilot. We'd taken to calling Fulton Hogan our GC - Game Changer. They were the company that would take us into the Aus market. We cracked the champagne that night and planned our expansion.
Of course, in the cold light of day, we had to service them. And they required servicing. There was Fulton Hogan, MDD, and in case that wasn't enough of a task to bite off, we also opened a Melbourne office and investigated the UK market too in the winter of 2017.
The Australian market grew for us solidly, and proved that the product was capable of servicing projects twice the size of what we were on in NZ.