True or False: you can build a large profitable business solo

Is it possible?

Everyone knows about solopreneurs and solo-creators. You have an idea, execute on your own for a while, and make good revenue in a lifestyle business.

But, what if your goal is to build a large profitable business (6 figures plus)?

Can you achieve that as just one person without working 80+hour weeks? No contractors, no full-time hires, and no VA's.

You can get started on anything yourself, but if your goal is to scale, you need to outsource (even with the best automations).

If you think you can build a large company solo, what examples are there of previous creators and founders?


My co-founder and I are building Hunq. A way for creators to build their team and split the costs with other creators.

Can you build a large profitable business solo?
  1. Yes
  2. No
  3. It depends on the niche
  1. 3

    Maybe in consumer space. But definitely not in enterprise space - if your selling to other businesses, they will expect support etc. Would not be feasible for one person to scale such a business. On the other hand, one person can probably scale a product like Instagram.

    1. 1

      I definitely agree it's not possible in the enterprise space but I don't think it's possible in the consumer space as well.

      It would be interesting to see if there are any solopreneurs scaling products themselves like instagram.

  2. 2

    It’s an interesting question.. I wonder if IH has some data on that? When we add our products on IH there’s a short survey...

    @csallen are there ever reports produced on “the state of indie hacking” based on that data in respect to Antonio’s question above?

    I’d love to see an annual IH report, like the State of JavaScript one. It’s wild to see how things change over time to me.

  3. 2

    Some things are harder when you are solo and others are easier.

    For example, fundraising and division of labor early on are easier when you have a cofounder. On the other hand, it’s rare to find two minds that share a vision, so two founders are rarely in sync about every issue.

    A friend of mine was just pushed out of his startup by his other two co-founders. Seeing someone lose a business overnight that they spent months building is pretty devastating. This kind of story is more common than you might think in startups with a founder.

    1. 1


      In the case of your friend, that sucks but he's probably going to be better off in the long run. People like that (the co-founders) have a tendency to get that same treatment they dish out. Or their company culture crumbles.

  4. 2

    If you define a large business as 6-figures, then it's more than possible.

    Examples: myself

    1. 1

      💪🏿 Solid job. Are you trying to grow that number? If so, when do you think you’ll need to hire someone?

      1. 4

        Already done that, stopped being solo in early 2020. We are currently 4 people and growing!

  5. 1

    Depending on your business, 6 figures isn't really "large" so I'd have to say yes. For example, if you're making software for a niche and can charge and appropriately high license fee you could get there easily with a handful of customers, providing support for your software in a small community. It all depends on a lot of variables.

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