Entrepreneurship Experts David Skok and Stephanie Schatz Friedman Lead New Program to Guide B2B Startup Founders Through Challenges of Growth

September 5, 2018

Zero to 100: Matrix Growth Academy provides start-to-finish curriculum to address the knowledge gap between product/market fit and scaling

Program to launch with in-person Academy event on September 11, 2018 in San Francisco

BOSTON and SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 05, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- MatrixPartners, a premier venture capital firm with a 40-year history, today announced that Matrix General Partner and author of the popular ForEntrepreneurs blog, David Skok, and former SVP of Sales & Customer Success at Xamarin (acquired by Microsoft), Stephanie Schatz Friedman, have created a new program to help startups maximize their potential. The Zero to 100: Matrix Growth Academy fills a significant knowledge gap for entrepreneurs situated between the idea of finding product/market fit and the point at which a business is ready to scale. Through a comprehensive curriculum that addresses the search for a Repeatable, Scalable, and Profitable growth process, David and Stephanie detail the specific series of steps that B2B companies need to go through to figure out how to build their go-to-market machine. The Zero to 100: Matrix Growth Academy will launch with an in-person Academy event at Bespoke San Francisco on September 11.

“Conventional startup wisdom says that when you find product/market fit, you’re ready to start scaling and hit the gas. While this works very well for consumer-focused companies, it doesn’t work for B2B startups,” said David Skok. “Most of today’s startups are being created by first-time founders, typically from a product or technical background. These are very smart, dedicated entrepreneurs, but growth processes represent an area where they have little to no expertise. They are experimenting and searching for answers but currently can only find limited guidance, often without context, and this can lead them in the wrong direction. That is why Stephanie and I would like to help.”

While concepts like product/market fit are very well taught and understood through things like The Lean Startup and its subsequent movement, founders are often later surprised that when they increase spend in sales and marketing, sales don’t grow. An important piece of training hasn’t been clearly articulated yet, which is crucial for long-term success.

The Zero to 100: Matrix Growth Academy curriculum was designed to remedy this gap by detailing the specific actions needed to complete the eight steps of the Repeatable, Scalable, and Profitable Growth process David and Stephanie have developed. Based on many years of operational experience, they found that it is absolutely critical that founders don’t attempt to skip steps in an effort to jump ahead and force progress. For example, hiring salespeople before the founders have figured out how to sell the product or ramping the salesforce before there is a repeatable sales motion can actually slow progress and prove fatal by increasing cash burn.

Zero to 100 provides a sophisticated curriculum for founders to prevent this from happening. While the primary focus is on building a Repeatable, Scalable, and Profitable growth machine, David and Stephanie, together with other invited speakers, share a number of additional key lessons related to how to build the right organization-- from the company operating system to recruiting, to the role of the CEO. Zero to 100 also espouses a fundamentally different approach from conventional growth models and strategies, which have focused on how vendors would like things to work. By contrast, Zero to 100 places the buyer at the center of the funnel design. This shift has been proven time and again to lead to major breakthroughs in funnel conversion rates.

“There are plenty of great conferences and programs out there, but what we’ve found in our interactions with countless entrepreneurs is that concepts are often not presented within the context of what’s relevant and important at a specific stage of a startup. It’s hard to find a place where you can learn how to scale a startup from start to finish,” said Stephanie Friedman. “David and I are extremely excited to collaborate on Zero to 100 so that we can fill a void that has been holding B2B startups back. We’ve developed a program that will prepare startup leaders to exceed their goals and develop thriving, dynamic, innovative businesses regardless of the funding climate.”

Some of the tech industry’s most successful SaaS startups have relied upon David and Stephanie’s expertise to help define their growth trajectories.

“David is a champion of entrepreneurs who knows how to help and empower them. His advice and insights were instrumental to us as we grew HubSpot,” said Brian Halligan, co-founder and CEO of HubSpot. “The Zero to 100 curriculum clearly targets a problem that we see all the time when HubSpot sells to startups. This is a must for any burgeoning SaaS company that aspires to become a real business. The approach is disciplined, informed, and doable and addresses a real need in the startup community.”

The Zero to 100: Matrix Growth Academy will kick off with an in-person academy event from 12:00pm - 7:30pm on Tuesday, September 11 at Bespoke San Francisco. For more information please visit forEntrepreneurs.com, MatrixPartners.com or click here to register.

About David SkokDavid started his first company at the age of 21, and over the next 25 years, founded a total of four companies (Skok Systems, Corporate Software Europe, Watermark Software, and SilverStream Software) and led one turnaround (Xionics). In 2001, he became a venture capital partner at Matrix Partners, the firm that had backed his last two companies. David has invested in companies such as HubSpot, JBoss (acquired by Red Hat), AppIQ, Tabblo, Netezza, Diligent Technologies, CloudSwitch, TribeHR, GrabCAD, OpenSpan, and Enservio-- all of which have had successful exits. He currently serves on the boards of Atomist, CloudBees, Digium, Apollo GraphQL, Namely HR, Salsify and Zaius. David is also the author of the ForEntrepreneurs blog, which receives over a million unique visitors a year, and is Inc. magazine’s #1 and Forbes #2 ranked website for entrepreneurs.

About Stephanie Schatz FriedmanStephanie Schatz Friedman has spent more than 15 years in sales, marketing, business development, operations and general management, with specific focus on enterprise software. She has been involved in three startup success stories, and remained as a key executive after one acquisition to manage operations for a $380M, 220 salesperson business. As her latest endeavour Stephanie joined Xamarin (acquired by Microsoft) as the first non-engineering hire and built Xamarin’s business from $0 to $50M run rate in less than 4 years. During that time she grew her sales and customer success team to encompass a high-velocity inside sales team as well as an enterprise team, with a total of more than 100 sales people. She has lived and worked on 3 continents, is fluent in 5 languages and intimately familiar with the challenges of building and scaling a global business.

About Matrix PartnersMatrix Partners works with visionary founders of early-stage startups to amplify their potential. Our general partners blend deep experience with personal commitment to support founders from start to success. Recent Matrix investments include Oculus VR, Zendesk, Hubspot, Acacia Communications, Polyvore, Lever, Poynt and Namely. Founded in 1977, Matrix Partners has East and West Coast offices (San Francisco and Cambridge) as well as offices in Shanghai, Beijing, Mumbai, and Bangalore. Find out more on www.matrixpartners.com and @MatrixPartners.

Photos accompanying this announcement are available at: http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/c8ace35c-d067-4627-8d3b-87e077bcb7e1


For Editorial Contact:Megan MaxwellGMK Communications megan@gmkcommunications.com

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