Aaron Patzer lays bare Mint's numbers

At Juice Pitcher, Mint CEO gives behind-the-scenes look at Mint's internal growth strategy

Lessons learned from entrepreneur by Matt Bowman
October 7, 2009 | Comments (3)
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Last night before a crowd of some couple hundred budding entrepreneurs, investors, and professionals in the entrepreneur community, Mint CEO Aaron Patzer presented a step-by-step narrative on how he built his company in three years to $170 million target for personal finance giant Intuit.

In a moment of nonchalance, Patzer, who spoke at the Juice Pitcher event, hosted by and, admitted to Adeo Ressi, the founding member of The Funded, that he sold Mint for cash to Intuit, so it didn't matter to him what happened to Intuit's shares.

Nonetheless, it's a great resource for entrepreneurs. Keep this article and video bookmarked and share with your fellow entrepreneurs.

Here are some of the highlights of the presentation, in which Patzer used Mint's actual numbers to suggest a model for startup-building:

Raising Money:

  • Phase 1: Once you have a mature idea, raise $100,000 from friends and family to build a prototype
  • Phase 2: Prototype complete, raise $1 million and launch an alpha into the market.
  • Phase 3: Once you have some traction, raise $5 to $10 million to scale up.

Phase 1 Expenses (1st $100,000):

  • Founders: $30,000/year
  • Engineering 1st hires: $30,000-50,000/year
  • Office: $400/cube/month
  • Tech: $10,000
  • Legal: Deferred payments for 0.50 - 0.75% of company

 Phase 2 Expenses (seed round):

  • Salaries: $50,000 - $90,000/year ($450,000/year for 5 people)
  • Overhead: +20% ($100,000/year)
  • Legal: $25,000 + $2,000/month ($50,000/year)


Phase 3 Expenses (Series A)

  • Salaries + Overhead: $200,000/year/person
  • COGS: many one-time expenses add up to about $150,000/month
  • Legal: $10,000-$50,000/month



Bambi Francisco Roizen, on October 7, 2009

Adeo was an excellent emcee.

Steven Echtman
Steven Echtman, on October 7, 2009

Great to hear the inside story and get a peak at the blueprint for this amazing success. Thanks Aaron and the Vator team.

Satyajit Sahu, on October 8, 2009

Aaron Patzer is too awesome an entrepreneur! And this presentation is a must-watch for every startup guys out there! Thanks for sharing this.

Alexandra Danieli
Alexandra Danieli, on October 14, 2009

This is interesting and very insightful!

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