Klaviyo Was Bootstrapped for 3 Years

A few days ago I shared my big takeaway from an article about Andrew Bialecki, founder of Klaviyo: he bootstrapped his company at first and advises founders to raise the least amount of capital needed to get traction in the early days.

Andrew owned 38% of his company when it went public, which is a bigger share than you normally see. I usually consider 10% to 15% a big win for the founder.

Digging into Klaviyo’s early fundraising, I learned that the company was founded in 2012 and didn’t raise capital until 2015. In that three-year period, it surpassed $1 million in revenue and became profitable, per Forbes. The company then received a $1.5 million investment from Accomplice and a few angel investors, according to a press release.

Andrew’s advice about raising minimal capital early on sprang from his own experience in doing so, which likely was a material factor in his ability to maintain a large ownership stake. Andrew’s advice and his outcome are useful things for early-stage founders to consider when they’re thinking about their fundraising.