I chatted with a founder who’s building an impressive software company. He’s bootstrapped his growing—and profitable—company to $2 million in annual recurring revenue. And he’s done it without proximity to success, since he lives in a tier 3 city. He’s been figuring it out as he goes. I could tell he didn’t understand the significance of what he’s built to date. Sure, there are things that need to be cleaned up, but the results are impressive given his resources and environment. He’s thinking about raising capital now and isn’t sure how to go about it or whom to talk with.
I think of him as an outlier founder. He’s outside the purview of traditional start-up and venture capital networks and ecosystems. Yet he’s demonstrated that he has many of the traits that make a great founder, including resilience in a suboptimal environment. If he were surrounded with the right resources and advice, this founder has the potential to build a huge business that customers love.
Outlier founders (and markets) really interest me. They’re solving unique problems that are overlooked by most people. I believe there’s a ton of opportunity to have a huge impact on society by getting resources to outlier founders and markets.