Pearl CEO Andy Kurtzig shares lessons learned

Kristin Karaoglu · January 9, 2013 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/2cc8

Build a product and test with customers first; Mission and values matter

Quora may be getting tons of attention for the amount of money it's raised, but Pearl is also a service that let's people get answers to their questions. The difference between the two companies is that Pearl has raised a lot less money, but is generating a ton more (in the order of a $100 million gross revenue run-rate). Watch Andy Kurtzig, CEO and founder of  Pearl.com, a website dedicated to connecting people with professionals in hundreds of different categories, share his stories about he bootstrapped his company in the early days and how he scaled it.

Splash is a startup event and competition, where seasoned CEOs and founders of fast-growing tech companies, give TED-like speeches about their lessons and advice. At our next Splash event, held in San Francisco, you'll hear from Phil Libin, CEO of Evernote, which has raised $250 million in funding and has recently been valued at $1-plus billion, as well as Renaud Laplanche, founder and CEO of Lending Club, which has raised some $100 million and is also valued at well north of $500 million. 

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Kristin Karaoglu

Woman of many skills: Database System Engineer; SplashX event producer; Author of Startup Teams

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Pearl.com

Startup/Business

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Pearl.com is the world’s largest source of professionals online, and provides people with easy access to 10,000 independent, verified professionals in 700 specialties for one-on-one answers to just about any question or concern. Whether you need a medical explanation, help with a legal question or a way to save money on your car, tech or appliance repair, Pearl.com gives customers access to “wisdom when you want it™.”

Formerly known as JustAnswer®, the company has been growing revenue an average of 123 percent year over the last five years and currently generates revenue in 196 countries and 22 currencies.  Pearl.com was founded in 2003 by serial entrepreneur Andy Kurtzig as a way for his then-pregnant and worried wife to talk with an OB/GYN about her round-the-clock health concerns in a more convenient way. Today, the company has evolved into a platform for people around the world to communicate directly with verified professionals in hundreds of categories as varied as pet behavior and tax law to antique appraisal and computer repair, anytime, from anywhere, affordably.

Recognized by the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating and boasting relationships with brands such as Dr.Phil.com, PetMD and Car Talk, Pearl.com is now one of the largest and fastest growing providers of access to professional services online. The company has increased revenue for 33 quarters since inception and grown an average of 123% per year since 2008. The Board of Directors includes Charles Schwab, Larry Sonsini (Observer), Bob Finocchio and Sandy Robertson.

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Andy Kurtzig

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CEO of JustAnswer; Investor in Vator Investment Club (VIC)