Stride, an easy-to-use customer relationship management tool, has been acquired by KISSMetrics founders Neil Patel and Hiten Shah. Terms of the all cash deal were not disclosed.
“Stride was created and grown as a side project. Since that time, it’s grown to over 8,000 companies using the service regularly … and over 300 paid customers,” said co-founder Andrew Dumont, who during the day works at Seattle-based Moz. “But we wanted to give our customers more — a better experience, better product, and better brand, something we could do as a side project.”
We featured Stride earlier this year in a Startup Spotlight, and recently tested it as our own CRM here at GeekWire.
Created in just 24 hours, Stride was a side project for its founders. Dumont said that they wanted to put more horsepower behind the idea, one of the reasons why they were attracted to the deal.
In an interview with GeekWire earlier this year, co-founder Kevin Chau said that they should have focused more on the service earlier.
“We would have had an earlier growth sprout had we pushed it harder, sooner. But, because it was a side project, not all of us had the time to fully dedicate to Stride,” he said.
With Patel and Shah now devoting resources to it, there’s the opportunity for Stride to obtain wider reach. In an interview with TechCrunch, Patel said that they wanted to Stride in order to offer people a CRM tool for those “who can’t afford Salesforce nor do they need all of the features that Salesforce has to offer.”
Stride, which allows businesses to track sales leads, ranges in price from $19 per month to $79 per month.
Other creators of the Stride app include Nathan Carnes, Adrian Pike and Amiel Martin.
UPDATE: I asked Dumont why they decided to sell now, and what he learned through the process
There’s a few reasons why we decided to sell now. The primary reason was that we, as a team, weren’t doing the best job keeping up with product evolution. We’ve had a handful of outstanding feature requests and improvements that had been piling up, and we just weren’t able to keep up — as a side project, it’s very difficult to provide the quality level that a growing software product demands. We wanted to give our customers more. That, and Neil came to us with an amazing offer — an offer where the product would live on with a full-time team behind it, and a vision for the product that we all shared. With Hiten’s eye for product design and Neil’s marketing muscle, we think they’ll be able to do more with it than we ever could.
The biggest thing I learned is how gratifying side projects (I wrote about that here) are from a pace and breadth of learning perspective, but how damn hard they are. You have to manage a remote team, competing priorities, when those other priorities have a much stronger financial component to them, all while trying to stay competitive in a crowded market like the one we were competing in. It’s a constant struggle. A challenging, but very fun struggle.