20VC: Is Speed the Most Important Thing from 0-1 | Why Hiring Inexperienced People is Better | The Biggest Lessons Scaling Zip to $1.5BN Valuation with Rujul Zaparde, Co-Founder and CEO @ Zip

Posted on 24th April 2024 by Luca

Rujul Zaparde is the Co-Founder and CEO of Zip, the world’s leading Intake-to-Pay solution, adopted by leading enterprises and startups including Snowflake, Canva, Airtable, Webflow, and others. In 2023, Zip raised $100 million in a Series C round, valuing the company at $1.5 billion. Before founding Zip, Rujul was a Visiting Partner at Y Combinator and a product manager at Airbnb.

In Today’s Episode with Rujul Zaparde We Discuss:

1. From Airbnb PM to $1.5BN Founder

  • How did Rujul’s first company fail? What were his lessons?
  • What did Rujul learn from his time at Airbnb?
  • How did Rujul come to co-found Zip? What was the aha moment?
  • What did Rujul wish he’d known when he started Zip?

2. Standing Out in a Hyper-Competitive Market

  • Why did Rujul pick such a competitive market? How did they stand out?
  • Does Rujul think founders should focus on pain points or platform solutions on day one?
  • What is Rujul’s advice to founders who are in the discovery process?
  • Does Rujul agree with Trae Stephens @ Founders Fund that serial entrepreneurs doing B2B enterprise SaaS are wasting their talent?

3. The Biggest Lessons Scaling Zip to $1.5BN Valuation

  • Which key moment caused Zip to accelerate?
  • Why does Rujul think speed is the most important element in startups?
  • Why does Rujul not believe in design partners?
  • Why does Rujul believe repeatability is the most important thing when pitching?
  • Does Rujul think AI will destroy outbound sales?

4. How to Hire & Manage Teams

  • What was Rujul’s “rude awakening” building a sales team?
  • What was Rujul’s biggest hiring mistake? What did he learn from it?
  • How does Rujul decide where to focus his attention and resources?
  • Why does Rujul believe younger managers are more creative?

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