The Full Ratchet (TFR): Venture Capital and Startup Investing Demystified

David Rabie of Tovala joins Nick on a special Crisis Coverage installment to discuss Finding PMF, Raising Series B, & Navigating a Startup Amidst the Pandemic. In this episode, we cover:

  • I was just checking and we had you on the show back in March of 2016... that was over 4 years ago, pre-launch, during your Kickstarter campaign.  So crazy how much time has passed.  Can you refresh us on the origin story of Tovala...
  • We've invested in the pre-seed, seed, Series A and now Series B round... and we're fortunate to have a front row seat while  you and the team built an amazing company but bring the audience up-to-speed on the last few years... what have been the key milestones/inflection points?
  • Your revenue was strong, hovering near mid seven figures ARR, until Q3 2019 when it took off at a growth rate like I've never seen... accelerating past $10M ARR and continue a rapid growth rate, even during the crisis.  What changed that caused the ramp?
  • How do you define PMF and when did you know you reached it?
  • What tech companies do you compare yourself to and how do you measure up?
  • North Star Metrics?  LTV, Payback, Yearly Spend, Retention?
    Overall, how has the crisis affected your business?
  • What are the major levers/measures you've taken to reduce cost?
  • Talk to us about raising the B round -- and How it was trying to raise as the pandemic hit?
  • Let's talk about what's next for Tovala...  On the oven side of the business... currently consumers have to purchase your smart steam oven -- a countertop device similar to a toaster oven.  What does the future look like on the hardware side and is the Tovala countertop steam oven always going to be necessary to enjoy Tovala food?
  • And the food itself... what are some options available to expand meal kits available beyond just Tovala's kitchen? Any other strategic partnerships or growth channels that are high priority opportunities for you after closing the B round?
  • Greek chicken and vegetable pita... Any plans for breakfast or lunch?
  • From my family members... When are you going to have a pizza or a hamburger?
  • How would you describe your leadership style and the culture you've established at Tovala?
  • What advice would you have for founders building a D2C tech company?

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