Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Escape Velocity - with Dan Martell

Sep 24, 2020

In 2011, the billionaire co-founder of PayPal, Peter Thiel, started giving $100k to young entrepreneurs under 22.

…but only if they would drop out of college.

$100k paid to 20 applicants per year without taking any equity at all. 

There was nothing in it for him. So why did he do it? 

Thiel believed talented young minds were choosing college instead of building valuable businesses, so he began paying entrepreneurs not to go.

It was super controversial.

Whether the idea offends you or not, one thing is clear: The Thiel Fellowship attracts talent.

Like my latest guest on the Escape Velocity show, Christian Owens.

Christian is the founder and CEO of Paddle, an all-in-one SaaS commerce platform that is making massive waves in the tech industry.

Before we praise the Thiel fellowship for supporting Christian, let me clarify something:

Christian started his first business at 14 years old and grew it to $4M ARR by 17 years old before ever applying for the fellowship. 

Then he started Paddle when he was 18 (now grown to $14M+ ARR)…

And has been named in Forbes top 30 under 30.

Needless to say, Christian is intelligent beyond his years and shares his impressive story and perspective on business in this episode.

Christian has been so deeply entrenched in the software world since he was a teenager that he speaks with long-lived wisdom.

In this interview we chat about:

- How he got accepted into the Thiel Fellowship
- Paddle’s unique pricing structure
- How they have a nearly 0% churn rate
- Front-loading infrastructure for backend profit
- Pivoting from apps and games to SaaS
- Right revenue vs Wrong revenue
- Why it’s cheaper than ever to start a SaaS
- How to know when to expand focus
- Why moving to Silicon Valley is a bad idea
- Supporting $2k MRR up to $100M+ ARR pricing models

Paddle is quite a non-traditional and forward-thinking tech company.

They have huge insights into what is and is not working in the SaaS world since they have a direct view of the revenue streams of many companies.

Christian even considers Paddle as a partner to the tech companies that they work with, often making strategic suggestions so it’s a win-win for everyone.

This is a fresh take on innovative tech business strategy.

You’re going to love this episode… lots of value! Let’s kick it off.


Dan Martell has advised more startups than his hometown has people and teaches startup founders like you how to scale. He previously created, raised venture funding for and successfully exited two tech startups: Flowtown and You should follow him on twitter @danmartell for tweets that are actually awesome.

+ Instagram (behind the scenes):
+ Facebook (live trainings + Q&A):
+ Twitter (what I'm reading):