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We just sold our SaaS to Calm Capital

After 5+ years building Wavve to help podcasters & audio creators better share and promote their podcasts on social, Wavve has been acquired by Calm Capital.

It's hard to condense everything down into one post. It's been such a long journey that started in 2015 when @nickfogle and I tried to build an audio-first community platform (we were way too early). We ran out of cash and then turned a little internal marketing tool into Wavve in hopes that it could pay our mortgages one day.

I almost quit at 6k, 9k, and 14k MRR. It felt like it was never going to become a full-time gig but thanks to small, incremental month-over-month growth, we kept at it.

But I don't want this to be some inspirational, keep at it post. Our journey with Wavve has been more of a lesson of becoming better business people as it has been anything else. When we first started, we didn't know anything about positioning, pricing, product, customer support, distribution, financial planning, etc.,.

Deciding when to sell was a tough challenge in itself. We wrote up a long blog post about why we sold, how we did it, and why we chose Calm Capital here: https://churnkey.co/blog/wavve-has-been-acquired-by-calm-capital

We will also be sharing articles on the Churnkey blog. If you want to hear our story or collaborate on a podcast, Clubhouse, Twitter Space, etc., just reach out via [email protected].

Drop any questions you have in the comments and I'll respond!

  1. 2

    Congrats & thank you for sharing!

  2. 1

    Amazing, Baird. Thanks for sharing!

  3. 1

    Wow congrats Baird!! Well deserved

    I know you guys run at least 4-5 separate SaaS businesses. What made you decide to sell vs building a larger portfolio of companies? (or staying put with a handful of profitable businesses)

    1. 6

      A few reasons:

      • We aren't great operators at larger scales (we started feeling this at 1M ARR+)
      • Wavve began to make up a large % of our net worth and the outstanding risk of something happening became real enough to need to exit.
      • It's really what the business needed. I guess we could have hired people to run it and kep the equity but the risk would still be outstanding.
      • We had our next "thing" ready to go and focus on. We needed to clear the headspace Wavve was taking up. Even if I wasn't working on it, it still required headspace at it's size.
      • We like starting companies more than we like running them.
      1. 1

        Good points! Can definitely relate to some.
        Really excited for you guys and congrats once again

      2. 1

        Congratulations on the sale! I hope to be in your shoes some day :)

        I'm just curious, when you speak of risk, what risk are you talking about? Is it the risk of competitors?

        1. 1

          Thanks! There seems to be a lot more buyers entering the space that buy companies like our ours, so I bet you will be in our shoes one day if you decide to.

          Great question because I'm having a hard time defining it. There wasn't one specific risk point to point to. More of a collection of things that could possibly make things go south. Competitors, market adjustments, security breach, podcast industry shifts, etc.,

          All unlikely events but those irrational concerns grow as the valuation becomes a bigger portion of net worth. Definitely loss aversion playing a role here.

          Also, any-time we mapped out how to get the company to "the next level", the gamelan required some big shifts which would come with risk.

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