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Best of Bootstrapping: Blitzscaling vs. Bootstrapping

Posted on Friday, Mar 8th 2019

You must have read something or the other about Blitzscaling, the hypergrowth phenomenon that Reid Hoffman has been championing:

What entrepreneur or founder doesn’t aspire to build the next Amazon, Facebook, or Airbnb? Yet those who actually manage to do so are exceedingly rare. So what separates the startups that get disrupted and disappear from the ones who grow to become global giants?

The secret is blitzscaling: a set of techniques for scaling up at a dizzying pace that blows competitors out of the water. The objective of Blitzscaling is not to go from zero to one, but from one to one billion –as quickly as possible.

Well, I have a small fact to point out: it probably isn’t an option for you.

Hypergrowth is not a natural phenomenon in business.

Very few companies grow virally as Facebook, Amazon, Airbnb, Uber, or Slack have done.

Blitzscaling requires that you show a certain level of viral adoption (not necessarily monetization) of whatever product or service you are selling BEFORE investors would make the bet on you and shower you with capital such that you can run a river of red ink the size of the Nile.

I am sure you’ve heard me explain over and over again that over 99% of the entrepreneurs who seek venture financing get rejected.

Well, over 99.99% of those who seek to do blitzscaling FAIL.


Because very few companies have the kind of viral hypergrowth in adoption that a Facebook or a Slack exhibited in their infancy.

And without that, you will not attract the scale of capital needed to pull this off.

So read or listen to what Reid Hoffman has to say.


Then sit down and look at your company with a realistic lens.

The most likely answer will be that you need to follow a Bootstrapping strategy, not a Blitzscaling strategy.

Good luck!


This segment is a part in the series : Best of Bootstrapping

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