Lessons Learned: Banister on business model redux

Willingness to change will determine whether you live or die as a startup

Lessons learned from entrepreneur by Bambi Francisco Roizen
May 26, 2008
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/235

For entrepreneurs who feel they keep bumping up against the wall with the wrong business model, don't feel defeated. Scott Banister, co-founder of IronPort, which was sold to Cisco Systems for $830 million last year, and who was an early investor in PayPal, Facebook, Slide, Zappos and now Zivity (which he also co-founded with his wife, Cyan), says often the right business model isn't the first one. He should know, he said that at both IronPort and PayPal, the original plan was thrown out the window, despite the number of employees at both companies. "PayPal had probably 40 people before the full transition from Palm Pilot payments onto eBay payments," he said. At IronPort, there were 20 people before the company switched gears and started selling to marketing departments within enterprises, rather than IT departments. "We went back to the drawing board," he said, referring to the early days at IronPort.

Scott also talks about thinking out of the box with business models, and shares advice on how to position a company for a sale.



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