Flippa Profile

Flippa logo.

Flippa is an online marketplace to buy and sell online businesses, digital real estate, and domain names.

Founder(s): Matt Mickiewicz, Mark Harbottle

Industry: Tech

Founded in: 2009

Location: Austin, Texas and Melbourne, Australia

Interview With Blake Hutchison (CEO)

Describe your product or service:

“#1 Marketplace to Buy and Sell Online Businesses.”

Describe your company values and mission:

“A frictionless pathway to exit and ownership for all online business owners and entrepreneurs globally.”

How are you funded? I.e. venture capital, angel investors, etc.

“$11 million in Venture Capital.”

How big is your team?

“45 [Team Members]”

Did you always want to start your own business? What made you want to become an entrepreneur?

“Flippa.com started on Sitepoint. Sitepoint was a developer community, and via a forum, the developers started to trade digital assets. It spun out as a stand-alone company in 2009.”

How did you come up with your startup idea? How did you decide to actually act on the idea? What gave you confidence that you were on the right track?

“The founders started Sitepoint. It’s for web professionals, by web professionals: developers, designers, programmers, product creators, and entrepreneurs alike. This engaged community set the pathway for other ideas including businesses like 99Designs and Flippa.”

How did you come up with your company name? Did you have other names you considered?

“It came from developers flipping apps and sites. Our business has evolved considerably since that time, but it’s still memorable and effective.”

What is the greatest challenge you faced in starting your business, and how did you overcome it?

“Bootstrapping! This takes incredible patience, cost management, and focus.”

Who is your product or service made for? Who is your target market?

“Entrepreneurs and business owners all over the world.”

What’s your marketing strategy?

“1. Customer Happiness. Word of mouth is our strongest marketing asset. 

2. Paid Marketing including performance, sponsorship, and event participation

3. SEO”

How did you acquire your first 100 customers?

“Organically by leveraging the existing Sitepoint community.”

What are the key customer metrics / unit economics / KPIs you pay attention to to monitor the health of your business?

“We look at:

  • Valuations Won
  • Listings Won
  • Marketplace Value
  • Conversion Rate
  • Lifetime Value
  • Blended CAC (Customer acquisition cost)”

What’s your favorite book on entrepreneurship?

“‘Black Box Thinking’”

What is your favorite startup or business podcast?

“‘How I Built This’ with Guy Raz.”

What is something that surprised you about entrepreneurship?

“[There are] lots of smart people [but] only so many quick smart people.”

How do you achieve work/life balance as a founder?

“It’s tough. Try to have fun at work.”

How do you stay motivated?

“I am motivated by our customer stories. Every happy customer is motivation enough to keep pushing.”

Did you have to develop any habits that helped lead you to success? If so, what are they?

“Do things today. Tomorrow is too late.”

What are you most proud of as an entrepreneur?

“Growing a distributed and diverse team all over the world.”

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