Interview: Selling a Successful SaaS Business

Invalid addresses are a significant problem for e-commerce merchants, as they lead to a potential increase in redelivery charges, customer support costs and negative customer reviews. When he discovered this pain point, entrepreneur Wilson Lee decided to launch a solution: RoboTurk.

In 2021, Lee exited his hugely successful SaaS business, RoboTurk through FE International.

RoboTurk is a simple and effective solution to crush address problems by preventing customers from entering invalid addresses or undeliverable addresses.

“While working on one of my previous ventures, I noticed that customers often input invalid shipping addresses during the checkout process, and this created massive headaches for merchants. I thought it was a very silly problem so I built a product that fixes these invalid shipping addresses,” Lee says.

He describes himself as a scrappy hacker slash product and business person. Someone who has always loved building things. “As a kid, it was Legos, as a teenager, it was Armies and Ancient Empires and as a professional, it was financial models,” Lee says.

As with many entrepreneurs, Lee’s knack for business became evident early in his life. “I have been selling things ever since I was a kid in middle school. I was selling hardware products at flea markets and in high school, I was selling Yu-Gi-Oh cards and scrap metals.”

Lee got his start in quantitative finance during the financial crisis in 2008, and in 2014 he went into the startup scene.

“I really enjoyed building things. It’s an amazing feeling when people use a product that you put into the world and it’s an even better feeling when they pay you for it.”

Why He Decided to Sell RoboTurk

Initially, Lee built RoboTurk with one goal in mind: to pay for his rent in San Francisco. “I realized that RoboTurk was going to be successful when it surpassed my initial goal within the first year. I didn’t jump full-time into RoboTurk until 2019, two years after I started the project,” he says.

Lee first started thinking about selling his business in 2018 while he was juggling a full-time job and a side project – it became increasingly challenging to balance the two.

One day, while listening to one of his favorite podcasts, Indie Hackers, Lee heard FE International’s founder and CEO Thomas Smale share the do’s and don’ts of selling a company, and the message resonated with him.

He proceeded to reach out to FE and was expecting a long exit process. “I always thought it was going to be a long and arduous process, but with a hot market and FE International’s help, it was pretty smooth, and it went much faster than expected.”

Learn more about how FE International value SaaS Businesses: SaaS Valuations: How to Value a SaaS Business in 2022.

What’s Next?

Ultimately, Lee successfully exited RoboTurk and is now the co-founder and general manager of AppHub.

Based in New York City and San Francisco, AppHub is a software platform for e-commerce merchants that brings together best-in-class software applications to drive merchant growth. AppHub’s product suite consists of more than 20 applications used by over 100,000 merchants on platforms such as Shopify, Magento, and WooCommerce. Its mission is to create software that advances the future of commerce.

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