At OpenView, we pride ourselves in having a tight focus. We invest exclusively in B2B software companies at the expansion stage. But what exactly does “expansion stage” mean? The term itself, without context, is admittedly vague, and people often have different definitions for what places a company squarely in the expansion-stage bucket. It can really depend on who you ask. Here at OpenView however, given that this is where we collectively focus 100% of our efforts, I think you will hear a pretty consistent message across the firm.
When Have You Reached the Expansion Stage? Two Big Criteria
For the OpenView team, there are a couple of factors which we are constantly evaluating to make the “expansion stage” assessment:
1) Product Market Fit
Has this been established? Have you found an acute pain point and developed a solution that addresses that particular issue effectively? Without overcoming this initial hurdle, a company cannot truly be ready for long-term, sustainable growth. Granted, there may be iterations and new features on the product road map over time, but that initial fit is essential.
2) Repeatability on the Go-to-Market Front
This is a very important element when determining whether a company is primed for aggressive, expansion-stage growth. Pouring capital into a sales engine without some semblance of repeatability is akin to wearing a blindfold. How can you truly know if you are chasing the right types of customers and acquiring them efficiently? For tips on developing a focused, repeatable go-to-market strategy, read this series of posts from OpenView founder and Senior Managing Director Scott Maxwell.
Is This Where You’re At?
With these two, initial measuring sticks as a guide, we can help determine whether a company is primed for the expansion stage and whether or not we are the right partner to help fuel their future growth. If this happens to describe you, lets talk!