loader from loading.io

561: Identifying the Levers for Efficient Growth | John Evarts, CFO, Mediafly

CFO Thought Leader

Release Date: 01/08/2020

573: CBD: Sizing Up  the Opportunity | Alan George, CFO, Ojai Energetics show art 573: CBD: Sizing Up the Opportunity | Alan George, CFO, Ojai Energetics

CFO Thought Leader

CFOTL: What are some of your top of mind numbers? George: The first thing that I look at is daily sales. I get a report that comes out in the middle of the night. I know what we did in sales the day before, and then I can drill down into it and say, OK, since I'm primarily a direct-to-consumer business, I want to see my traffic conversion and AOV. I want to see how we're doing relative to our forecast. I want to see how any specific programs are driving those key metrics. For us, specifically, traffic is a huge driver. We have really strong conversion and AOV. Traffic-driving awareness...

info_outline
572: Measuring the Efficiencies of Customer Acquisition | David Burt, CFO, ServiceTitan show art 572: Measuring the Efficiencies of Customer Acquisition | David Burt, CFO, ServiceTitan

CFO Thought Leader

CFOTL: What are your top of mind numbers?  Burt: The first things that I look at on a weekly and monthly basis tend to center on the fundamentals. Once we're in the door with a customer, there's an opportunity for us to provide additional services that might add additional recurring revenue. This growth is really important because it allows us to forward-invest into areas of R&D, sales and marketing, and so forth. We are of a certain size today, but we have aspirations to be much, much bigger, and as we grow, we are enabled to do more and more for our customers more efficiently...

info_outline
571: Optimizing Your  Pipeline's  Velocity |Greg Wookey, CFO, Boulevard show art 571: Optimizing Your Pipeline's Velocity |Greg Wookey, CFO, Boulevard

CFO Thought Leader

Inside the world of retail businesses, Greg Wookey’s CFO career has advanced down a path that parallels the sector’s growing appetite for more sophisticated software. Such was the case roughly 10 years ago, when he stepped into the CFO office at Mindbody—a firm whose well-known software helped fitness centers across the country to manage the demands of their clientele—and such is the case today, as Wookey serves as CFO of Boulevard, a SaaS developer whose offerings are specially tailored to high-end salons and spas. This arena—in what Boulevard and other software developers commonly...

info_outline
570:  Discovering What Makes Customers Happy | Sue Vestri, CFO, Greenphire, Inc. show art 570: Discovering What Makes Customers Happy | Sue Vestri, CFO, Greenphire, Inc.

CFO Thought Leader

CFOTL When it comes to customer measurement whatare you focused on? Vestri: I think that everyone tries to measure customer service and customer support in some way. In the past, we historically have done customer surveys and implementation after implementation periodically throughout the year. It's always challenging as to who actually responds and how you disseminate the information and make any use of it. We still do these types of things, but recently we've actually gone out and done some user forums where we've sat in the room with some of our users. To be honest, not all of the feedback...

info_outline
569: Growing Your Team's Knowledge Base |  Raj Dani, CFO Ping Identity show art 569: Growing Your Team's Knowledge Base | Raj Dani, CFO Ping Identity

CFO Thought Leader

Back in the early 1990s, with both feet firmly planted on an auditing career path inside Price Waterhouse’s Tampa, Florida, office, Raj Dani decided to take a detour into the accounting house’s M&A advisory practice. Over the next few years, the one-time auditor began providing deal-makers with financial and operational due diligence on their future mergers and acquisitions. “I became focused on cash and EBITDA generation, the strategic value of two enterprises coming together, and how you drive synergies and value for shareholders,” explains Dani, who says that his segue into...

info_outline
568: It's the Narrative that Matters | Lanny Baker, CFO, Eventbrite show art 568: It's the Narrative that Matters | Lanny Baker, CFO, Eventbrite

CFO Thought Leader

CFOTL: What are your priorities as finance leader over the next 12 months?  CFOT:" Here at Eventbrite, my priorities are to bring focus and simplicity. We just went through our planning experience for 2020. We started with 12 different strategic initiatives, and I'm happy to say that eight of them wound up on the cutting room floor. We've got four that everybody is really focused on. These four initiatives had 20 subprojects, and these, too, have been dialed down to four. We're just bringing focus and clarity and simplicity. I teased the team in our flash report. On the 57th page, we put...

info_outline
567: When Growth & Risk are Synonymous  |   Kevin Jacobson, CFO, LogicGate show art 567: When Growth & Risk are Synonymous | Kevin Jacobson, CFO, LogicGate

CFO Thought Leader

Step inside CFO Kevin Jacobson’s office at LogicGate, and there’s little question that you’ll think you’ve entered a realm where growth and risk are often two sides of the same coin. In fact, LogicGate’s fast path to achieving “product market fit” was no doubt shortened by early customers who today wield a similar growth/risk mind-set. Four-year-old LogicGate, a provider of governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) software, now expects its workforce to expand to 170 employees before 2021. Says Jacobson: “I tell our team that going forward, we are going to be breaking records...

info_outline
566: Building Your P&L Culture | Scot Parnell, CFO DailyPay show art 566: Building Your P&L Culture | Scot Parnell, CFO DailyPay

CFO Thought Leader

We are nearly at the end of our interview with Scot Parnell when we ask him to explain what led him to accept the CFO position at DailyPay, a company with a pioneering technology inside the human capital management realm. This is a question that we had asked a little earlier in the interview, but this time we want to know what other factors may have contributed to his decision. Although Parnell has already put forth a compelling explanation of DailyPay’s unique offerings, he is happy to share a bit more with us. “This role was absolutely fascinating. I was at a place in my life where I...

info_outline
565:  A Fintech Unicorn Burnishes its Risk Management Brand  | Michael Tannenbaum, CFO, Brex Inc.  show art 565: A Fintech Unicorn Burnishes its Risk Management Brand | Michael Tannenbaum, CFO, Brex Inc.

CFO Thought Leader

Tannenbaum: At Brex, pretty early on, I was kind of familiar with the banking landscape from when I had been in investment banking. The group that I had been in actually served regional banks, so I did a lot of regional bank mergers and acquisitions. Then, at SoFi, I had built a lot of relationships with regional banks. I think that when you start in fintech, there's always this belief that you're competing with big banks. That was a lot of the marketing positioning of my former employer, SoFi, but at Brex I saw this opportunity to partner with banks because I was familiar with the card...

info_outline
564: Synchrony Steps Beyond the Shadow of its Historic Roots  | Brian Wenzel, CFO, Synchrony show art 564: Synchrony Steps Beyond the Shadow of its Historic Roots | Brian Wenzel, CFO, Synchrony

CFO Thought Leader

CFOTL: Having splitout from GE- we would imagine there were certain business processes already in place at Synchrony, while others processes had to be reestablished or developed. Wenzel: The processes that have been developed are probably the core part of our business. We had to build everything from scratch. Even the processes for things like very mundane benefits in HR, and paying people, and for some of the regulatory reporting–we had to build all that up. But we did take a process from GE that was a very good process in the credit risk world, a very traditional process. You go out...

info_outline
 
More Episodes

Ten years or so ago, the expression “never waste a downturn” became a popular maxim among business leaders who viewed the economy’s downward spiral as an opportunity to trim waste and restructure portions of their businesses. The expression also summed up the mind-set of a unique class of executives who, despite a bleak hiring environment, viewed the period as being potentially transformational for their careers.

Such was the case with CFO John Evarts, who entered the downturn as a CFO for a not-for-profit and exited as CFO of Mediafly—a small content asset management company that in the coming years would open a new growth chapter by answering the demand for more compelling content in sales enablement.

“From late 2008 to 2009, there were some challenges inside the not-for-profit sector, so I started looking for an opportunity to broaden myself beyond the not-for-profit realm—I was comfortable in taking that risk and making a bet on myself,” explains Evarts, who had originally transitioned into the not-for-profit sector from the world of investment banking and has also taken on the title of COO during his Mediafly tenure. “When I shifted from the not-for-profit area into ‘start-up land,’ I was fortunate to have this amazing opportunity to play a more strategic role and determine how to deploy resources in a more strategic way.” - Jack Sweeney

 

CFOTL: Share with us a finance strategic moment of insight?

Evarts: Our first opportunity for mergers and acquisitions was really what I would say was a watershed moment for me. I had never had the opportunity to pursue an acquisition before, and I needed to figure out for myself what a framework would be in order to determine whether this was a good one or not a good one. It's very different from what's in the textbooks. When you get into the actual practical matter of pursuing an acquisition, you need to be very disciplined in how you look at it, how you think it through. We had to come up with this construct that we call our 100-day plan. When I started thinking about how to make that construct and 100-day plan--what we call "one Mediafly"--it really started driving home the point that culture is critical.

The reason why we're acquiring this company is so that not only do we get the benefit of the products, but also we get the benefit of the really great people who are on the team. We were able to get this 100-day plan around M&A as a way for us to think about and philosophize about this "one media fly" concept, which is, for example, the way that we look at how to source the capital that is necessary and how to figure out how the people need to work within the organization. So, it's not only how many resources we need in order to acquire this company, but also what does the construct in the comp model look like afterward? What is the expectation of revenue production that's going to come out afterward?

Then, over time, you get to the point where you're also talking about culture and its impact. What do you think about when more than 50% of the company is outside of the Chicago headquarters? What do you do? How do you think about remote work? So, all of this goes beyond the typical finance conversation. It's really about culture, by the time you get it all the way out. This, for me, was kind of an "A-ha!" moment, once we got to this concept of "one Mediafly."