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Scaling a Pre-IPO Enterprise Software Company: Anaplan CEO Fred Laluyaux (Part 5)

Posted on Friday, Apr 4th 2014

Sramana: What application areas are we talking about?

Fred Laluyaux: We enable hyper growth and hyper change. We empower users to enable data-driven decisions in real time. HP is live with Anaplan to do their territory and quota plans around the world. They deliver territories and quotas to their sales reps globally. Other companies use Anaplan for financial applications. Other companies use Anaplan for trade and promotion management.

When you think about Anaplan, think about a tool that gives business analyst the ability to build and share models on their own at an enterprise scale. We have 140 billion populated cells in the HP model for example. The users do not feel that heavy, complex process to set up their model. They just know they can run a model to collaborate with thousands of users and that they can modify their models in real time. We liberate business users by giving them spreadsheet like immediacy. People love the ability to modify a spreadsheet and see the numbers recalculate on the fly. When you do that in Anaplan, we do those calculations in real time. The model is smarter than Excel and a lot more scalable.

Sramana: When you came on board there were 10 customers for Anaplan. You described different business users and use cases. How do you sell? Who is the buyer?

Fred Laluyaux: It depends on where you are selling. We had to focus because we are a small company. Our strategy is to land and expand. We have added 100 key accounts in the last three months. We picked up a lot of customers in the area of sales with the use cases being things like compensation or territory. We do a lot around quota planning because there is a huge level of pain there. We also sell a lot of budgeting and planning to the controllers of organizations. This is a space that has been dominated by Oracle, SAP, and IBM and their technology is aging. Companies need performance enhancements. Finally, we have stumbled on trade and promotion as a use case, and we have done a lot of modeling work in this area.

Once we are in an account, we stay very close to our customers and focus on delivering a good experience for our users. That leads to expansion. Other organizations in the company see the software and want to use it as well. One of our oldest customers just told us a few weeks ago that they built a model for travel and expense management. I was quite happy to hear that because users are taking pride in the solutions they are creating on their own.

We went to market by building an enterprise sales force. When I joined the company, we had 35 employees and now we have 185 employees. We have a sales force that includes pre-sales, inside sales, and consultants for post-sales support. We are now in our second phase. We are still growing the sales team, but we also have strategic partnerships with companies like Deloitte and Accenture. We have a partnership with who is a customer and investor.

This segment is part 5 in the series : Scaling a Pre-IPO Enterprise Software Company: Anaplan CEO Fred Laluyaux
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