We’ve received major support from our friends and investors at True right from the very early days. This has continued with support expanding in the US including introductions to senior management at major CPG companies and retailers. Following our recent roadshows to Chicago and New York we’ve compiled some of our thoughts around taking a European tech business to the US.
One of the most enticing features of the SaaS business model is its potential to scale quickly in terms of number of clients and territories. There are certainly plenty of challenges to scaling a tech business but tackling entry to the US market is one that can’t be put off if you’ve ambitions of becoming a market leader in your sector.
When we first founded Spirable we focused on our home patch, the London market. Over the last couple of years we’ve expanded across the UK, Europe and are now serving clients across Asia, Africa and increasingly in North America.
When it comes to expanding in the US, we’ve been lucky to get a lot of help and advice from other founders who have tackled this challenge and succeeded. Here are a few of the lessons we’ve learned so far:

Reference Points

Case studies in your pitch deck from brands that are recognised and respected names in the US helps with early validation. Some big European brands are unknown in the US and don’t hold the same weight when pitching. Targeting US recognised brands with pilots in exchange for case studies can help make your pitch much more relatable.

Target Clients

We were amazed to discover brands that are hardly known outside of a specific area in the US but are generating revenues in excess of $10bn. When putting your list of ideal target clients together it’s worth researching beyond the obvious names and regions. There are opportunities in towns and with brands that may be less familiar.

Existing Partners

Leveraging your existing network of partners, clients, investors, DIT and friends can be very useful initially. There are some generous people out there that are willing to help. This might be your chance to get in front of clients and start building US reference points. Doing a great job for these early client adopters in the US can give you a solid base to build from.

Face-To-Face

From our experience there is no substitute for getting face to face with clients. Initially this might mean doing a lot of travel but over time having more boots on the ground in the US will help. Initially these hires may be consultants which gives some flexibility before ramping up to make local hires.

Budget

Doing business in the US isn’t cheap. Wages, legal fees and travel costs can all be considerably higher than in your home market. Planning these costs into your budget is a must as you scale up in the US.
We’re proud that our team is made up of a diverse group of talent from around the world. This diversity doesn’t just offer complementary skill sets and perspectives but gives the team more of a global focus. The future for Spirable is exciting and focused on delivering market leading technology, that serves our clients, wherever they operate.