Case Study – Lessons from a $200 Million Sale

About the Episode

Listen as we go on a journey with Ben Antier, co-founder of Publica, from initially founding Publica to his successful exit several years later. We’ll cover how Ben came up with the idea, how he found his partners, raised money, created his first product, and how he scaled the company. You will learn what he attributes his success to, what challenges he ran into, and how he managed the sales and negotiations. Join us as Ben shares the lessons he learned that you can take to successfully scale your company.

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In this Episode

2:30 How did you come up with the idea?
3:50 How did you raise your first million?
6:00 How much equity did you have to give up for the first million?
6:55 What was your first major milestone?
8:15 How long did the first MVP take to launch, and how did you get feedback on it?
10:00 When did you decide to pivot?
11:00 How long did the second iteration take to build?
17:55 How did you establish the pricing?
19:05 How much of your success would you attribute to the success of your product?
24:20 What did you do after you raised your second round of financing?
26:20 Why don’t you believe in outsourcing?
27:50 How did you scale the business?
31:40 What was your biggest challenge in scaling the company?
34:20 How important was equity to motivate the staff?
37:10 How did you structure the equity for your employees?
41:40 How did you determine how much equity to grant to employees?
44:00 How did you manage cash flow?
44:30 How did you scale the business without additional funding?
46:00 What happened after you received your first offer?
48:30 How was the transaction structured?
52:00 What would you do differently in the sale process?
53:00 What was the hardest part about selling your company?
54:30 You hired an investment banker. Why did you still have to work weekends during the sale process?
55:30 What’s the most important lesson you learned during your entire journey?

Highlights

  • Focus on creating value, not making money – if you do, then the money will follow.
  • Build a team that really cares about your product and vision. (Note – this is difficult with outsourcing.)
  • The founders and management team will be incentivized to continue to grow the company if they receive stock in the acquirer and continue to be aligned.
  • The people you surround yourself with will determine your success – this includes your co-founders and your employees. There’s only so much you can do yourself.

Meet Our Guest

Ben Antier

Ben Antier

Co-Founder & CEO of Publica

Ben Antier is the Co-Founder & CEO of Publica. Publica is a leading Connected TV (CTV) Ad Server and works with many of the world’s biggest broadcasters, TV manufacturers, and OTT apps. Publica has designed award-winning CTV technology solutions for some of the biggest global streaming publishers in the market. Headquartered in Palo Alto, Publica provides solutions for publishers to maximize their revenue across their CTV inventory through key solutions including a unified auction, ad pod management, audience management, and server-side ad insertion (SSAI). Publica serves over 4 billion ads on CTV every month, delivering quality ad experiences for Crunchyroll, E. W. Scripps, Fox, IGN, MLB, Philo, Samsung, ViacomCBS, XUMO, and more. Publica is owned by Integral Ad Science, a global leader in digital media quality.

Location Location: Palo Alto, California

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