We realize across numerous portfolio companies that the toughest and most important challenge in their business today is finding the right people and getting them up to speed – as fast as possible.
LightSpeed is no exception. The Company has been growing at a rate of over 100% annually for years. With the company’s recent acquisition announcement, it is expected that they will now be growing even faster. MerchantOS adds a high quality and complementary product to the already successful LightSpeed Pro line. With this transaction, the LightSpeed team has been enhanced with complementary skills sets, further market reach and an ability to accelerate its product road map.
Of course, it doesn’t stop there. Over the last 18 months, we’ve seen firsthand how the Company has been developing and positioning itself for accelerated growth. Dax Dasilva, the founder and CEO, successfully transitioned LightSpeed from a lean startup to a category leader. That has required building and nurturing a flexible, yet focused, management team. Dax has displayed an enormous amount of individual drive while still working within a cohesive team that holds each other accountable for the company’s overall success. Now, over 15,000 stores worldwide are experiencing the benefits of their hard work via an in-store shopping experience powered by LightSpeed. That’s more than double the number of customers since we started collaborating with the team, and less than half the number it’s going to be next year!
While iNovia is a very active tech investor across Canada and the US in a variety of sectors, it’s very important that we grasp the underlying business dynamics of each and every one of our companies. It’s the only way we provide value – by understanding what type of people are needed to help grow a Company. Interestingly enough, we have recognized a pattern over the years. A common denominator across all our high growth portfolio companies is that the business model was driven by the Company’s ability to create and keep satisfied customers by empowering every employee to go above and beyond their job description to make things right.
That means when a Company outperforms its industry peers, it’s because the team outperforms their customers’ expectations of results and service. At LightSpeed, everybody is actually accountable for the overall success of the Company, not just a part of it. Every team member understands their role and their impact on the Company’s ability to deliver. In order for the Company to double its revenues next year, it means that the sales team has to land thousands of new customers per quarter, the product team must deliver timely new releases, customer support must be able to answer the demand for additional resources, and the marketing team has to position LightSpeed as the leading solution in a variety of market segments and verticals.
Ultimately, this points to the fact that the scarcest commodity in a business like LightSpeed is not customers or capital, but rather its people. If that’s the case, you need to make sure you attract the best talent. Most great people already have great jobs, so the task at hand is to make sure every person in the team is making hiring a key part of their day-to-day job.
We know existing personal networks are often the best form of recruiting. However, sometimes it isn’t enough. If you know someone who is passionate about their areas of expertise and motivated to do great things in life, then we want to hear about them.
It is very much like the “virtuous circle” behind our most successful companies: Great people build great products; great products generate great profits, which in turn provide the resources needed to attract great talent.
Are you ready for LightSpeed?