Okendo is an Australian company that provides software as a service (SaaS) solutions. Their primary focus is on businesses on the ecommerce platform, Shopify.
Okendo has a suite of tools that enable ecommerce merchants to collect reviews and user-generated content from their customers for their website or social media. Their emphasis is on providing tools that will enable the next generation of retail.
Before they hired SBO, Okendo had a bookkeeper who essentially just paid out salaries. But for a rapidly growing company, this was not enough.
Matthew Goodman, the Co-founder and Chief Executive of Okendo, felt the company needed a more rigorous approach to managing its finances.
With their attention focused on sustainable sales and growth, they lacked the time to consistently review their accounts to understand monthly spending and analyse their overall financial health.
With COVID-19 accelerating the business in 2020, it was time to bring in an expert to manage their finances more effectively.
Okendo was delighted to find that SBO was intimately familiar with the Shopify ecosystem. We’ve had a lot of experience working with Shopify clients and brands.
Our good reputation in the market gave Okendo the confidence that we could help them discipline their finances.
Matthew Goodman feels that SBO quickly helped his SaaS company to:
- bring increased accuracy to expense management and revenue reporting, adhere to an established budget, and discuss critical monthly financial insights.
- Put together and package a monthly financial performance report for their shareholders.
- Forecast cash flow to help manage the burn rate.
- Leverage SBO connections in the capital markets for introductions and compensations.
Working with SBO enabled Okendo to be in a steadier, more prepared position for the next stage of their business lifecycle. That is, going from a seed-stage company to a growth-stage company.
According to Matthew Goodman, SBO played an essential role in Okendo’s tripling their business in 2020.
Benefit 1 – Discipline in managing finances
“I think the biggest benefit is the establishment of a budget and ensuring that we are disciplined in monitoring our adherence to it.”
Most importantly, SBO has helped Okendo remain disciplined and stick to a budget. They have introduced a new rigour in terms of managing their finances.
“I think it’s about getting the clarity around our expenses and our forecasts.”
SBO has helped Okendo delve deeper to see the present and future implications of finance and how it fuels every aspect of their business.
It has also shown them that financial planning is linked to the core business processes. Thus, they need to look at every critical business decision through an economic lens using financial modelling and analysis.
Benefit 2 – Substantial time savings
“A big part of the value is the time saved.”
One of Okendo’s main issues was a lack of time to analyse finances consistently. By hiring SBO to look after their finances, team Okendo saved time and had the advantage of professional financial insights on their side.
Benefit 3 – Improved communication with shareholders
“The reporting that SBO puts together is fundamental to our shareholder communication.”
SBO’s contribution to the reporting for Okendo’s shareholders has been extremely convenient and helpful. It has helped them deliver a monthly financial performance to their shareholder group in a well-packaged manner.
“I can confirm the shareholders are happy with our shareholder assets. SBO provides us as one part of that update, so we certainly do get positive feedback on the updates overall.”
The SBO Difference
Taking the company forward: “Working with SBO has been an instrumental part in maturing the organisation. By putting in place the budgets, management reports, and discipline, it’s enabled us to be more prepared for growing from seed stage to growth stage company. For us to be able to have conversations with venture capital folks with confidence, knowing our books and accounts are clean and in order. We’re ready and able to share data they may be interested in seeing quickly and with accuracy.” A team that understands start-ups: “The SBO team is confident, energetic, savvy, intelligent, highly personable, and very founder-friendly; they get it.” Service excellence: “A level of personal service and interaction that we as a start-up and fostering business really value. And that I can tell you from our experience list, having tried to work with several other larger firms is (something) you don’t get (easily).”
Summary of SBO services for Okendo
- Bookkeeping and management accounting for Australian and USA companies
- Financial advisory
- Cash flow forecasting
- Reporting and helping with stakeholder insights
- Monthly management reporting
- Networking opportunities