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Cleanshelf: How a Slovenian Entrepreneur Partnered with FP to Build a Big SaaS Company


Dusan Omercevic, a Slovenian national, learned how to code when he was in elementary school.  His father encouraged him to pursue a career in computer science.  Dusan pursued his passion in college and graduate school, where he majored in Computer Science.  By 2016, he was the Head of Product and VP Engineering at Zemanta, an ad tech start-up with offices in NYC and engineering HQ in Ljubljana.  As part of his job, he tracked all the different SaaS tools Zemanta was using.  He initially managed these in an MS Excel spreadsheet and then subsequently decided to automate the Excel tool in his free time.  The solution worked so well for his own needs that he consulted with some knowledgeable friends about building a company around this product.  This is how Cleanshelf was born...


Admovate: How FounderPartners Helped 2 Immigrants Build and Sell their Business to Yahoo! for Double Digit Millions on a Modest Investment in Only 9 Months

In 2011, Yi Mao and Wentong Li were energetic engineering grads of Tsinghua and Fudan, two of the top schools in China.  They came to the US for graduate school and met through the Bay Area Chinese tech community.  Their skills were honed at companies both big (Microsoft) and small (Turn), and their experience of architecting tech for a start-up and watching it become a large business made them hungry to do the same for their own company.  



MixBook: How FounderPartners Helped Turn a Great Photo App Making Only $800 a Month in Sales into a $25M+/Year Player in the Photobook Industry


Andrew Laffoon and Aryk Grosz were two smart, enthusiastic grads from Cal Berkeley who had a great idea:  use flash-based tech to make a better user experience and superior end product than the major players in the photobook space could provide.  They created a company, Mixbook, which quickly became one of the most popular photo apps on Facebook.  The only problem was, they were only generating $800/mo in sales.


AddEvent: How FounderPartners Helped a Danish Entrepreneur Set Up Shop in Silicon Valley and Get on the Right Path to Success

Michael is the kind of scrappy, visionary, product-centric entrepreneur Founder Partners loves working with.  He came from a marketing background, but was interested in software creation and, rather than hiring others to realize his visions, decided to teach himself how to code.  He honed his coding skills while working for a large communications agency, and his efforts paid off when, in the course of his job, he discovered the need for a calendar widget and realized he could create one himself.  Sensing he wouldn’t be the only one who could make use of such functionality, he launched his own product.  Sure enough, even without any major marketing initiatives, he was quickly able to generate an impressive startup user base -- 30,000 users around the world.



Relevad: How FounderPartners Helped 2 Brothers Reach their Dream: Running a Business that has Enjoyed 8+ Consecutive Years of Growth and Profitability

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For some entrepreneurs, the goal is to create a product that can be quickly sold for a nice profit, freeing them to move on to the next venture.  This is a fine aspiration, which also often aligns with the needs of VCs, who normally want to see rapid returns on their investments.  For many technical founders, though, there is a different, often more elusive dream, which is to create a sustainable business that they can continue to run and grow indefinitely, perhaps involving family members or with an eye towards building something that can be passed down for generations to come.  Not everyone wants to sell their baby.  Many want the ongoing satisfaction of nurturing and growing the thing they spawned, and the joy that comes from being able to earn a living doing the thing they enjoy most.

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