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How This Service Business Sold for Around 4-Times Revenue

Built To Sell Radio Episode #368

In 2006 Kelby Zorgdrager started DevelopIntelligence, an outsourced training provider that helps programmers develop new skills and adapt to ever-changing technologies.

The business snowballed as Zorgdrager onboarded most Fortune 500 giants in his space. However, Zorgdrager had a problem. The company was too dependent on him.

To ensure the business could succeed without him, Zorgdrager implemented a four-step system to replace himself as the rainmaker of his company.

The strategy worked. By 2020 Zorgdrager had grown the business to $12.1 million in revenue, which piqued the interest of some acquirers. A year later, Zorgdrager signed an acquisition offer from Pluralsight in a deal valued at $48.9 million.

In this episode, you’ll learn how to:

  • Sell to a Fortune 500 giant.

  • Establish trust with a team of independent contractors.

  • Develop a high-performing sales team using an unconventional tactic.

  • Replace yourself as the rainmaker of your company.

  • Utilize your M&A attorney to get more money for your business.

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More About Kelby Zorgdrager

Serial self-funded bootstrap Founder and entrepreneur is known for building growth-oriented, profitable, customer-driven people-first organizations that deliver lasting impact.


Earn-out: Earnout or earn-out refers to a pricing structure in mergers and acquisitions where the sellers must “earn” part of the purchase price based on the performance of the business following the acquisition. Source.

Due-Diligence: Due diligence is an investigation, audit, or review performed to confirm facts or details of a matter under consideration. In the financial world, due diligence requires an examination of financial records before entering into a proposed transaction with another party. Source.

Letter of Intent (LOI): A letter of intent (LOI) is a document declaring the preliminary commitment of one party to do business with another. The letter outlines the chief terms of a prospective deal. Commonly used in major business transactions, LOIs are similar in content to term sheets. One major difference between the two, though, is that LOIs are presented in letter formats, while term sheets are listicle in nature. Source.

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