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Let’s Buy A Business with Ryan Condie

Ryan Condie has done it all. He has built, scaled, bought, and sold businesses. Through his vast experience, Ryan learned that acquiring and operating businesses is a much quicker pathway to success than starting a business from scratch. Along with host Steve McGarry, Ryan discusses how to find what business model can work best for you, what both buyers and sellers should look for when acquiring a business, and how a successful acquisition takes place.  

First Acquisition

Ryan attributes a lot of his inspiration to a class he took in college led by a private equity firm that taught everything about how to acquire companies. He says it was the most impactful because it used real numbers and real businesses they had bought locally. It wasn’t just case studies – it was the real deal!

Upon graduating from business school, he stumbled upon a company he had bought from in the past called Narwhal Co., a unique wallets and accessories company. Ryan blindly reached out to the owner and pointed out that he didn’t have much inventory on his site and asked whether he would be interested in selling. The business owner said no.

Ryan continued to call the owner every two weeks with new ideas, and they soon became friends. About three months in, the owner called Ryan and said he was ready to sell. He wanted to sell to Ryan specifically because of his passion for the company.

This was Ryan’s first business acquisition, and he was able to scale the company 3x within the first year and then was able to double that again. After four years, Ryan would sell the company, earning his first successful exit, setting him on his way for a life of entrepreneurship.

Growing A Business Vs. Starting From Scratch

Early on, Ryan had some failures that he attributes to just being lazy.

It was still difficult to set up eCommerce sites and to start a business from scratch. You had to be really passionate and very invested, which Ryan simply was not. One such company that he started was a candy factory called Blue Moose Sweets. He was able to build the company up to 35 employees but found he just wasn’t interested in running a factory day in and day out.

This is when he really questioned what it was that he did want. Ryan says it’s important to figure out what you really want in terms of your own skill sets, risk level, and what you want in 5-10 years. This was when Ryan realized his strength was in growing businesses rather than starting them from scratch. Whether starting or buying a company, you’re always trying to minimize your losses and trying to figure out what works as soon as possible. He says a lot of entrepreneurs are successful because they take the most swings. The more at-bats you have the better your odds for making successful contact.  

Preparing For An Exit

When it comes to preparing a company for an exit there are specific metrics to look at, and your numbers need to be accurate.

One such metric is what qualified traffic do they have? Is it strictly from Amazon? Is there a possibility to add on other traffic sources such as Shopify? It’s also wise to look at who their suppliers are. Do they have just one supplier? What happens if that supplier goes under?

Ryan stresses that it’s also important to keep all your businesses separate, don’t have them under a blanket LLC, so it’s easier to differentiate when it comes time to sell one. Ryan points out that most people don’t start preparing to sell until they’re burnt out, when in reality, you should be thinking about it 12-18 months before you get to that point.

Ideally you should be thinking about a potential exit from day one so you can build a company that is transferable. Click To Tweet

Often people will build a business around themselves, their personality, their skill set, and that gives you less buyer options. Another pitfall is waiting to sell your business until it’s at the very top. While you want to get the maximum value it’s important to leave some value on the table. The buyer will need something to increase their own ROI.

One unique learning experience Ryan had when buying a company called RentLingo was that he found there was no staging environment for the code. It’s important to have a duplicate set of code on your computer so that you can use it to push code to see if it will break. You never want to break a live site. It just goes to show you that you really have to do your due diligence when it comes to acquiring a business.  

Finding A Buyer

When it comes to finding a buyer, Ryan says there are many resources out there but ultimately as a builder you have to put yourself in the buyers’ shoes and ask what the buyer wants out of this? Ryan has found that when it comes to potential sales, a lot of the options for buyers come from his personal network.

For instance, Ryan has a friend that owned a custom car part business that he was looking to sell. Ryan suggested he email all of his customers for the last five years to see if anyone was interested. That was wise as these are all car enthusiasts that are already passionate about the product and believe in the company.

Ryan had another friend looking to sell a business that flew out to meet with his competitors. His pitch was that while they compete with one another one day he’s going to want to move on and what would these competitors look for in acquiring a company. He then spent 12-18 months crafting the company to exactly what they were looking for.  

What Would You Tell Yourself Ten Years Ago Knowing What You Know Now?

Ryan says – not to start any companies from scratch but to start acquiring companies sooner.

Where To Learn More

Find ‘Lets Buy A Business’ podcast on Apple or Spotify. You can also find Ryan on Twitter @ryanpaulcondie.

PODCAST TRANSCRIPT

Steve McGarry:

Hello, and welcome to The Exit, presented by Flippa. This is a 30 minute podcast featuring amazing entrepreneurs who have been there and they have done it. The Exit talks to operators who have bought and sold businesses of all different sizes. You’ll learn how they did it, why they did it, and get exposure to the world of exits, a world occupied by a small few, but accessible to many.

Steve McGarry:

And before we get into this episode, be sure to check out the previous episode with Chris Bell from Perch. It’s a fantastic episode talking about Amazon FBA businesses, and it’s a lot of fun. But on this episode, I sit down with Ryan Condie from Let’s Buy a Business. We talk about all different aspects of buying and selling businesses, and there are some really great knowledge nuggets in here from Ryan. So without further ado, let’s dive right into my interview with Ryan. Hello, everybody. I am here with Ryan Condie, the host of Let’s Buy a Business podcast. How’s it going, Ryan?

Ryan Condie:

Great, Steve. Glad to be here.

Steve McGarry:

Yeah. Excited to have you. Excited to have you. So before we get into what you’re working on now, I’d love to learn a little bit about your background. What brought you to buying businesses?

Ryan Condie:

Yeah. So it started in 2012, maybe a little bit before that. In college, I went to business school, and like most people in college, you don’t really learn a whole lot in college. You end up developing a network and learn how to be an adult, that type of thing. And of course, you have a really good time in college, for the most part. And I did take one class from some private equity guys. They weren’t professors. They were a local private equity firm, and they actually came and taught a class just for one semester, and I happened to just sign up for it, and it was how to acquire companies.

Ryan Condie:

And so, this was in 2009, and that was the most impactful class that I took in all of college. And mainly because it was actually real numbers, real businesses that they had acquired locally, and we were able to open up the books and dive in. So, with that in my back pocket, I graduated, went into corporate America, went into tech, and I stumbled upon a website that I thought had an awesome product, I had been using it for years. It was a website called Narwhal Company. And you took old polyester ties, those big fat ones from the ’70s, and we’d turn them into wallets.

Ryan Condie:

And I reached out to the owner and said, “Hey, it looks like you don’t have very much inventory on here. Have you ever thought about selling?” And of course he said, “No,” Steve, because that’s what most people say when you reach out and say, “Hey, can I buy your company?” And I had no tax or anything like that, so I kind of shared a few ideas of how I would grow the company with him. And I was such a noob at all of this thing, and I just didn’t know what I didn’t know.

Ryan Condie:

Anyways, I just kept calling him every two weeks for about three months. We became friends, and every two weeks, I’d have new ideas. And out of the blue, three months after that, he called me up and said, “Hey, I’m ready to move on, and you seem like the guy with the most energy, the most excitement, and the most ideas. Do you want to acquire this thing?” And I said, “Sure, let’s do a deal.” And at the time, I didn’t realize that 100% seller financing was not normal, because I didn’t know what I didn’t know. And so, if I would’ve known what I know now, I probably would have overpaid for it.

Ryan Condie:

So I structured that deal, it was kind of seller financing, and that was my first foray into buying a website, buying a business. It was an e-commerce company. And I held onto it for about four years, I put a lot of time and effort into it, I made a ton of mistakes, and was able to grow that business about 3X in the first 12 months, and then doubled it again, and then sold it four years later.

Ryan Condie:

And there’s so much to unpack there, but I’ve done it a few different times, some with different websites, some with actual businesses and stuff, but the main thing, Steve, is I realized early on that when I had… I started probably really eight projects or companies, and only two of them really ever worked out. But the companies that I bought over the last eight years, they’ve all worked out and they’ve all made money. And I just attribute that to, it’s really hard to start from scratch.

Ryan Condie:

And I just realized it was so much easier for me to come in at year five or year 10, that has a product and a product market fit. It’s got customers, it’s got traffic, it’s got profit. If it’s made money the last five years, I think for the most part, maybe I can keep it to having make money over the next five years. And so, that was how I jumped into acquiring my first business.

Steve McGarry:

Very cool. Very cool. Yeah. I totally agree with the product market fit. You’re effectively bypassing all of the bumping around, the pinball machine of trying to figure out which direction you need to be sending your customers through on a business, and you’re just leaping all the way to fit, which is such a powerful thing to be able to do. So, that’s a really cool private equity class that was in your university. What a great idea to have that. I don’t remember that being available at my university. That’s really cool.

Ryan Condie:

It was kind of lucky, because it wasn’t available the next semester. I think they were giving back to the community, and they both got busy, all three of them, there were three of them, got busy with their own deals. And I just kind of lucked out that I was like, “Hey, I’m going to take this class. It sounds really fun.” And what’s interesting is, I was able to nurture relationships over the next few years. When I looked at additional companies, I would actually send them to these private equity firms.

Ryan Condie:

Now, they were way smaller than what they were looking for, but I was able to get some pretty expert advice, and that was something that I learned very early on, since I didn’t have a private equity background. I didn’t have an MBA. I didn’t even have a finance background. I failed accounting. I was terrible at accounting. But by using the people around me, using the people that had done a lot of deals, it really saved me from getting into some bad stuff that I didn’t know that I didn’t know about.

Steve McGarry:

Got it, got it. So a couple of successes, some failures. I’d love to talk a little bit about the failures. I think a lot of people, that’s what prevents the forward movement into something like buying and selling businesses. So the successes have been more on the buying businesses, right? The failures, were they earlier in the process of finding product market fit? Was that what you would attribute some of the failures to? Or what would you share about those?

Ryan Condie:

I wish it could be product market fit, but some of my ideas that I was working on in 2008 and 2010, they ended up being perfect market timing, and I just was too lazy. It’s really hard to start something from scratch. And 10, 12 years ago, it wasn’t as easy just to spin up a Shopify website. There was a little bit more that had to go into it. And it wasn’t like it was early 2000s, but it was still a little bit more difficult. And I started a children’s bow tie company back in 2008, 2009, that would have spun into some other things. And some of it just came down to laziness.

Ryan Condie:

And I think that’s one thing, too, is to really start something from scratch, you have to be so passionate about it and give up a lot of your, maybe hobbies, so to speak, to really invest in it. And some ideas that I had, I just wasn’t that invested in, so I failed that way. And then, throughout that process, I’ve done everything from e-commerce companies, like supplements, that I just, that was more of a product market fit. It’s an incredibly competitive space. And what I should have done is acquired someone who had an audience already, and then maybe plugged in the supplements to do that.

Ryan Condie:

And then also, I started a candy factory about seven years ago. From the ground up, we built a candy brand. It’s called Blue Moose Sweets. You can find it now in Sam’s Club and Walgreens. And I think building a factory and having 35 employees really made me question, “Okay, what do I really want out of this? Do I want to have an awesome lifestyle and an awesome business?”

Ryan Condie:

And so, there’s been some failures and there’s been some wins too. But I think ultimately, you’re trying to understand what your best fit is as an entrepreneur in terms of your own skill sets, your own risk level, and then of course, ideally, what kind of lifestyle you want five or 10 years from now. And I just realized, personally, I love the online space, and I didn’t want to be going into a factory with 35 employees, and trying to motivate them, and deal with people being sick. Some people are really good at that. I was not good at it and I didn’t enjoy it very much.

Ryan Condie:

And so, some of it is going to be product market fit, and some of it is just overall lifestyle and skillset fit. But I do think, for the listeners out there, as you go out and either start a company or you buy a small company, you’re always trying to minimize your losses, whether it be time or whether it be financially. So you’re trying to figure out whether something works as quickly as possible, and trying to close that feedback loop. And the one thing I’ve learned, and I kind of have to learn this over and over again, Steve, is it really comes down to, a lot of times, speed.

Ryan Condie:

If you say it’s going to take two months, how can you shorten that to two weeks or four weeks? Because ultimately, if you say it’s going to take two months, it’ll probably take four. But what I have noticed is a lot of the entrepreneurs around me, even the ones who are acquiring companies or building companies from scratch, Steve, is they take the most swings. They just have so many at-bats that, naturally, they’re going to find stuff that works. And I find the people who aren’t very successful, they dwell on the same idea for three or four years, they aren’t making a lot of progress, and so, some of that just comes into how fast can you move, in terms of speed, but also trying to identify your strengths.

Ryan Condie:

And throughout this process of starting companies and buying companies, I realized my strength was when I looked at a company, I knew ways to grow it, Steve. And if I could just focus on ways to growing it, rather than developing the brand, and the website, and starting from scratch, and getting that first dollar in the door, I thought if I can get in at year five or year 10, I’m able to grow this business significantly more than if I have to grind through this first 12 to 24 months, getting all those things lined up, and making sure the packaging is perfect, working with suppliers in China rather than just coming in at year five.

Steve McGarry:

Got it. Perfect segue into the next bit about how you prepare a company for an exit. So you’ve sold a few, you’ve bought a few. What would you say are the metrics? What’s the consistent? I know every business is different, obviously, but in the online space, you’re working in e-com, what would you say are the most important metrics that you track when you’re managing multiple businesses, and you’re selling them?

Steve McGarry:

Hey guys, Steve here. Taking a quick pause from the interview. I know that selling a business can feel unattainable and just out of reach for everybody, but it’s definitely something that is very reachable for people that are listening to this podcast with Flippa. And I’ve mentioned that this show is presented by Flippa. They have over 3 million users on their platform who are looking to acquire everything from content sites, to e-commerce stores, to SaaS platforms, or even mobile applications.

Steve McGarry:

So if you’re curious and want to know more about what your business is worth, head to flippa.com/theexit for free valuations on your business. It takes a couple minutes to literally go through, and you can just go through the whole process without committing to anything at all. So once again, flippa.com/theexit. Check it out, get a valuation on your business without any commitments, and just see exactly what your valuation of your business is worth. So, let’s dive into the interview.

Ryan Condie:

Yeah. So first off, especially if you have multiple businesses, you want to keep everything separate. Everybody likes to have just a blanket LLC and throw all their websites in there. It makes it really hard when you try to go sell something. So first off is your numbers have got to be right, from an accounting standpoint. If your numbers aren’t accurate, then nothing makes sense, and nothing matters after that.

Ryan Condie:

And as much as people like to say there’s an emotional part to it, the numbers do have to line up for the buyer. They’re looking for an ROI too, so it can’t just be an emotional purchase. I would also say there’s a few factors when I look at when you’re trying to prepare a company to sell. And a lot of times, most people don’t prepare, in my experience, they don’t prepare to sell until they’re burned out or they’re ready to sell, when in reality, you should really think 12 to 18 months beforehand, “If I was going to buy this business, what would I want in it,” and start developing those there.

Ryan Condie:

Some of the things would be the risk. This is a big one with online websites. Is there diversity in terms of qualified traffic? What about revenue? And sometimes, you have an Amazon FBA business, and it’s all coming from Amazon. That business can have a significantly larger multiple, if there is revenue coming in from Shopify, or if you have wholesale on top of that too. So a lot of it’s going to be the risk that’s associated with that particular business.

Ryan Condie:

The risk a lot of people don’t think about, especially when it comes to e-commerce, or when it comes to content sites, or really not so much content, but SaaS businesses, is do you have supplier risk? If you can only order your product from one certain supplier, what happens if they go under, or if there’s tariffs placed on that country, which is something we’ve been dealing with for a couple of years now, as you are well aware of?

Ryan Condie:

Or from a programming standpoint, I see it all the time, where someone has this great app or this great software, but they are the builders themselves. So that’s really hard, because then it leads into the transferability of it. If the business is built around you, and built around your personality, or built around your skillset, it’s really hard to transfer that.

Ryan Condie:

Someone has to know that code, and so, if you’re the programmer building the SaaS product, you almost want to hire and start training either an agency or another dev person or two and kind of start taking over your roles, because the new owner may not have that skillset. And if they have to have that skillset, it can significantly reduce the amount of potential buyers that are out there. So a lot of times, what you’re trying to do is understand the risk associated with the business and the transferability of it.

Ryan Condie:

And then sometimes, people like to sell their business when it’s at the top. And I totally get that, and that’s what you’re trying to do. You’re trying to maximize all the value. But there’s a lot of savvy buyers out there. Buyers understand if you’re at the top, and they understand if you have a true roadmap. And so, you do actually have to leave some value on the table for the buyer to actually grow the business. And so, I think that’s one thing, too, is…

Ryan Condie:

I sold the company about maybe a year and some change ago. And one thing that I had is I had launched a new product that quickly became about 10% of our total revenue for the year within two and a half months. And just that alone, if I would have waited, there would have been some scalability, but I had to leave some on the table for the new buyer, for the new owner, just so that they had something to increase their own ROI.

Ryan Condie:

So anyways, I think there’s a few factors in there that might help people when they’re looking to sell, but you can’t milk it all for what it is. You have to worry about the transfer of your company. Is it tied to your brand, or is it tied to your specific skillset? And then, of course, the risks associated with diversified revenue, diversified traffic, and diversified supplier power.

Steve McGarry:

Yeah. Well said with the transferability, because there are a lot of people that will build all this custom development for years and years and years, and then, not thinking about that, it’s just such a huge trench to jump into and start to dig through all of the different pieces of development over those years. So things like Shopify, and obviously Amazon, and things like that have really streamlined that. I mean, you’re just able to transfer it over without any code bases needed, or databases, or anything like that. It’s pretty substantial how big of a change these templated stores and e-com sites have been able to pioneer.

Ryan Condie:

So Steve, along those same lines, I bought a company about five months ago called RentLingo. We match up renters with apartment complexes. And this is an eight year old business, I have tons of traffic, it’s a great business, the owners had gone passive on it. And I brought a partner on this deal who is a developer. And he’s one of my close friends, I’ve worked with him before, so that was helpful to have him in my network.

Ryan Condie:

What was interesting, this was a great business, we took it over, and day one, we jump into it. And instantly, we realized, Steve, that it didn’t have a staging environment for the code. And what that means is, you keep a duplicate of your website, and anything that’s a custom website or custom software, you keep a duplicate of it on your computer, so that if you push code to it, you can tell if you’re going to break it. You don’t want to push code to a live website, because you don’t know if it’s going to break. And if it breaks, then it breaks for the hundreds of thousands of visitors who are coming there every month.

Ryan Condie:

And so, you’re constantly learning things, but this was actually a really good lesson for me and my partner as we acquired this company. And he’s a developer, and instantly, we said, “We need to make sure that we hire an agency or we hire the right developers so that we can actually sell this business five years down the road.” And if he was doing all the coding, we wouldn’t be able to actually exit this business, because he was a critical piece to it. And so, we’ve shifted his role from, “Hey, I’m going to do all the coding,” to, “You know what? I’m going to manage these coders, these programmers, and build it that way.”

Ryan Condie:

So I just went through this just barely. And there were some things that we worked out, and the sellers were fantastic, and actually went back in after we purchased the company and the website, they went back in, built the staging environment for us, because they understood the code, and it really opened up the window for us to kind of structure this deal. From day one, we have to think about a potential exit, because you could get three or four years down the road and it might be too late to really start unplugging some of the pieces that you’ve patched up.

Steve McGarry:

Yeah. Yeah. Great example. And in terms of the exit itself, with multiple of these businesses that you’ve sold, when it comes down to finding a buyer, what are some things that you could share with the listeners that you look out for? I mean, I know a lot of people are very emotionally attached, you touched on emotion earlier, where they’ve been growing this for five, 10 years maybe, and they feel emotionally attached to it, and they want to give it to someone who cares. But there are also people that are just burned out and just want somebody to take it. What would you say are some things that you could share about finding a buyer, a specific buyer?

Ryan Condie:

Yeah. So there’s a lot of resources in marketplaces out there, with Flippa, and Empire Flippers is on there from a marketplace standpoint, MicroAcquire is growing. And then there’s a lot of brokerage accounts, like Quiet Light Brokerage, Effie International, Website Closers. There’s dozens of them out there. I think ultimately, if you, as the entrepreneur and the builder of this company, can put yourself in the buyer’s shoes and understand what does the buyer want out of this, that’s a really important piece. And so, I think the biggest thing when it comes to finding a buyer is building a business that someone wants to buy. There’s a lot of businesses out there that just don’t make sense, even though someone wants to sell them. So that would be the one piece to it.

Ryan Condie:

And then the other thing, too, when it comes to potentially selling, a lot of the deals that I’ve sold have actually come from my own personal network. And I’ll give you one example. I have a friend that has this little add on to cars. It’s a stick shift thing that you can add on, and it’s custom. And he’s a car guy. I’m sure I’m butchering what it’s actually called, but you can put these custom things into your car. And he’s actually looking to sell his business. I think he’s doing $40,000 a year in sales, and he makes 20 grand a year. It’s a side thing for him, but he’s got a couple kids, he’s got a full-time job.

Ryan Condie:

And I told him, I said, “The best way to look for a seller in that type of a scenario, as the price is a lot smaller, is just email all of your customers over the last five years and say, “Hey, I’m looking to move on. If you’re interested in taking over and taking this legacy on, hit me up.” And he had several different people reach out to him, because ideally, he’s selling to car enthusiasts, and those would be the perfect people to actually take over his business.

Ryan Condie:

Now, I think that works on a smaller scale. If you’ve got a business doing a couple of million or more in revenue, I probably wouldn’t email all your customers that. I would think a little bit more strategically of who else there in the marketplace would want to potentially acquire you, or you can always go down the broker route. And the way I would approach a strategic sale is same thing of how you want to start preparing for your company 12 to 18 months before.

Ryan Condie:

And I have a friend who sold a company, and he sold it to one of his competitors. And what he did is, he flew out to where these competitors, where the president and CEOs of his competitors would be, at the different conferences and everything, and he basically knew they were going to be there and started networking with them. And his pitch was, “Hey, we compete with each other, but ultimately, one day, I won’t want to be in this industry. I’m going to want to move on. What do you guys look for in acquisitions?”

Ryan Condie:

And just that simple question, and people sometimes get scared of working with competitors, just that simple question, Steve, they outlaid exactly the roadmap and the things they look for in companies they look to acquire. And so, he went back, and over the next 12 to 18 months, he would give them monthly updates of what he was doing, but he basically crafted the company exactly what they would look for in terms of an acquisition, because that was the roadmap they gave him. And it just led to a very smooth transaction, and it was a no brainer for that company to acquire them.

Ryan Condie:

So there’s a lot of ways to do it. And I think also, from a seller standpoint, there’s a lot of emotion involved. There’s money involved and there’s emotion, and there’s money and emotion on both sides. And so, I think if the seller can understand that the buyer’s coming to this emotionally, they’re risking their hard earned cash, or they’re risking debt, or a personal guarantee, whatever it might be, there are both pieces to gain from it, and you’re able to create that mutual conversation.

Ryan Condie:

Of all the deals I’ve ever done, every single one of them, I’ve had amazing rapport with the seller or buyer. And the reason for that is people like to work with people they like, and it doesn’t matter if you offer less or more than somebody else. Ultimately, you want to work with people you like, and I’ve seen hundreds of deals done where it was not the top offer, but they were the easiest to work with, they were the best to work with, and they built up the most rapport. So ultimately, as you think about being a good seller and a good buyer, people work with people they like.

Steve McGarry:

Yeah, yeah. 100%. And I love the emailing customers, because in a niche like buying stick shifters in a car, it is such a good approach to finding fellow enthusiasts in whatever niche you’re in. I think that that’s such a clever approach to it, for sure. So, we’ve gone over a little bit about your background. We’ve gone over that you’re buying and selling websites actively. Knowing what you know now, obviously you’ve learned a ton over the past few years, what would you tell Ryan 10 years ago?

Ryan Condie:

I would say don’t start any companies from scratch. Start acquiring companies sooner.

Steve McGarry:

Got it. Got it. Well said. Well said. Well, that’s pretty much all the questions I have. I think we drilled down into a lot of the, how these exits happen, some good tactics. Where can people go and learn more about what you’re working on and your podcast?

Ryan Condie:

Yeah. Thanks, Steve, for having me on. So, I have a podcast called Let’s Buy a Business. It’s documented my journey. I look at deals. I do evaluations. I talk about the deals that I’m looking at and putting offers on. You can find that on Apple or Spotify. It’s called, Let’s Buy a Business. You can find me at letsbuyabusiness.com, or you can just follow me on LinkedIn or Twitter, Ryan Condie, or @RyanPaulCondie on Twitter.

Steve McGarry:

Excellent. Excellent. Well, wherever you guys are listening to this, on Spotify, iTunes, or SoundCloud, definitely check out the show notes for all of the links that Ryan just mentioned. But once again, thank you so much for coming on the show, Ryan.

Ryan Condie:

Thanks, Steve.

Steve McGarry

Steve McGarry

Steve McGarry is an entrepreneur, content creator, and investor based in sunny Tampa, Florida. In 2015, while living in San Francisco, Steve sold his first fintech startup LendLayer to Max Levchin’s (founder of PayPal) consumer finance company Affirm. In the last 5 years, Steve has both built an online community that reaches 1.4 million people every month on social media and a portfolio of over a dozen web properties. Currently, he’s the co-founder of a next-generation fintech startup called GrowYourBase while managing his portfolio of online businesses.