When Cary Strange was fresh out of college his dad, a successful VC, helped him launch a software company. He’s been in the start-up world ever since, having been involved in about a dozen start-ups and early stage companies, with roughly half of those ventures ending in successful exits. Not a bad track record.
As Chief Revenue Officer, Cary brings a wealth of experience and know-how to SPENT. Before coming on board, he was the SVP of Business Development at PEX Card, where he led the effort in securing key partnerships during the last 3 and a half years.
We sat down for a quick chat.
Talk a bit about your expertise in growing a business through strategic partnerships.
Early on, whether I was leading a company or joined as part of the team, I quickly realized that building strong relationships was key to setting the stage for aggressive growth in our partnerships and channels. This mindset translated both internally and externally, specifically in nurturing strategic partnerships from a conceptual stage to achieving profitability.
What makes for a successful partnership?
First, let’s talk about why most partnerships fail. They either fail because they’re the wrong deal, for a myriad of reasons, or the passion and vision from the initial dealmakers get dropped along the way. Both parties have to agree that there are some significant benefits in working together, then clearly communicate that to everyone else who joins in the process along the way.
What is SPENT’s core strength?
Here’s a challenge. You’re at a FinTech conference, say, at a Westin Hotel. Give the SPENT elevator pitch to someone who’s only going up one floor.
Well done. What was your worst sales day ever?
Shortly after I was married I had joined an early stage company as Director of Business Development. It required being on the phone a lot. That first year, there was something going on at home and my wife called me probably 10-15 times throughout the day (remember…no texting back then!). At some point, the calls with my customers and wife began to run together. I may, or may not have told several customers and prospects ‘I love you’ as I exited the call.
[Laughter] And your best day?
I’m not sure I can peg a best day. Anytime a partner contacts me and expresses true satisfaction in the success of a deal, that’s a good day!