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Week 4 - using partnerships in B2B startup strategy for growth

Faizan Patankar on 30 July 2020

This post is part of the Building It series where I share my journey building a startup, Amygda. Published weekly and as transparent as our customers, investors, and partners would have us be (read: legally allowed).

For the past 4 months I have seen no-one but my family in person. Finally this week I was able to do customer visits!

And so this week I will share a bit more on using partnerships in B2B startup strategy for growth.

1 new large customer partnership 🏆, and 3 prospective customer trials in the pipeline 🙌🏾

What happened?

Traveling to meet prospective customers has good and bad effects.

The good - meeting customer them in person, building trust, and actually enjoying the thing I love most, meeting customers.

The bad - all the time spent on travel for the meetings. I spent the equivalent of 2 days in travel for 8 hours of actual meetings.

But we had wins in week 4.

1 new customer partnership (and why it's important for your B2B startup strategy)

Can't disclose the name, unfortunately. But this is a huge win. The partnership benefits us in two ways, the first is by having the customer using Amygda's services. And secondly, the partnership gives us access to their customer base to sell together.

This is why it is important to have partnerships in your B2B startup strategy for growth

How did we get the partnership?

We got the partnership by asking for it. Yes, it sounds simple. But it is true.

OK, there is a backstory. But essentially the partnership came about by us getting an intro to the country manager for the customer. And when we were in discovery calls we realized we could help them two-fold.

And as I have previously mentioned, if there is a way to help my customers, I will.

That's what we did. Proposed ways we can help and begin validating Amygda's solutions. Ultimately, we will be judged by results.

3 new prospective customer trials (benefit of the partnership model built into our B2B startup strategy)

Through the new customer partnership, we were able to reach out to 3 further customers. And are now set to begin trials with all 3 of them.

This gives us entry into the Oil&Gas sector and mining industry. Both of these industries use complex engineering assets and want to reduce OPEX (operational expenditure). Amygda enables complex industrial companies to reduce OPEX.

This is actually a great fit for us.

How did we get these customers?

These 3 customers were introduced through the other customer partnership I mention above. That's the benefit of partnership.

One of the VCs I spoke to mentioned how partnerships and co-creation doesn't work.

I found that disheartening because I genuinely believe in co-creation and partnerships. In B2B space, why would anyone want to waste 5 years growing to 3 large customers?

Partnering is a much better B2B startup strategy for founders.

However, not every partnership is successful. As a founder, you have to understand what deals are worth making and which ones are not.

If you build a partnership that doesn't help you move your KPIs then it isn't worth it.

For Amygda, the only thing that matters is the customer. We are either growing our customer base, or we are not. We are either increasing customer satisfaction, or we are not.

Everything we do, has to meet the KPIs.

For whatever B2B startup strategy you make, keep in mind that partnerships can be very helpful.

Anyhow, back to Amygda.

On the customer side, this was a very positive week. ✌🏾

How is the fundraising coming along to build your startup?

For my avid readers, you know I don't like this section.

However, we did make progress on fundraising. We have another investor who is interested in working together. And we are going through the final motion.

This is super-positive for us because this investor is a firm that I could've only dreamt of working together with.

To make it happen is a ridiculous dream come true.

I won't even lie. It's hugely exciting and I can't wait to share more when it's all done ✅

OK, what else happened last week?

As I mentioned earlier, I spent the equivalent of 2 days traveling.

That takes a lot of time away from building Amygda. And it was a stark reality of what happens in a normal world. Building a B2B enterprise startup includes all the shenanigans of enterprise-level stuff.

But apart from travel, meeting folks was amazing.

Next week the hard work continues.

✌🏾

. . .

What do you think of this week? Let me know via messaging me on LinkedIn or tweet me @faizanpatankar. I love talking, just mention you read my blog.