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How to Build a

BillionDollarApp
@georgeberkowski
Introductions
Billion Dollar App Club
Mobile is the art of
re-invention
LESS
MORE
Lost his mother
Lost three sons
Lost a sister
Lost a girlfriend
Failed in business
Lost 8 elections
He was 52.
No-one did it first time
No-one did it first time
Instagram (Burbn.com)
WhatsApp (Status sharing)
Snapchat (Picaboo)
Clash of Clans (multi-platform)
Angry Birds (52 attempts)
Candy Crush (11 years)
Heres what youre up against
Better Design
MORE POWERFUL
Cheaper
Generally Awesome
the bar keeps on rising
So where does that leave us?
THE IDEA
+

THE PRODUCT
Great Idea
Validate Idea via Customer Development
Convert it into an App
Keep Testing + Iterating
Get to Product / Market Fit

Acquire Users
Convert to Customers
Customers invite Customers
If you want to generate a billion dollars
you need to touch a billion people
Match Inc. ~ $800 million
(Income $225 million FY2013)

eHarmony ~ $180 million


(Income $40-60 million FY2013)

Badoo ~ $200 million


(Profitable since 2009 )

Ashley Madison ~ $125 million


($40 million profit)

Adultery is great
Zoosk ~ $178 million (Income $2.6 million)
Filed for IPO
#1 grossing dating app (Top 25 overall)
41% users paid via mobile (up from 22%)
Fall 2012 ~ launch
Summer 2013 ~ Android
Spring 2014 ~ Tinder Olympics
Spring 2014 ~ 1 billion matches
Summer 2014 ~ 40 person team
Summer 2014 ~ 2 billion matches

2 years + ~ $1 billion valuation


Why did it catch ?
Great Idea
Validate Idea via Customer Development
Convert it into an App
Keep Testing + Iterating
Get to Product / Market Fit

Acquire Users
Convert to Customers
Customers invite Customers
THE IDEA
+

THE PRODUCT
BUSINESS MODEL

EASE OF CUSTOMER
ACQUISITION
Its like Facebook + Square for Cabbies
Great Idea
Validate Idea via Customer Development
Convert it into an App
Keep Testing + Iterating
Get to Product / Market Fit

Acquire Users
Convert to Customers
Customers invite Customers
220 cities
45 countries
Revenue doubling 6 months
~
Profitable in months (new city)
UberX (undercut taxis 15%)
150 times a day

0 10 20
Any big idea is going to take a while to get there. By
definition, if its big, and no one has done it before, its
not going to be 1-2-3, We got it! There is going to be a
dark period in there, because you dont know what the
key to getting there is. You have to be willing to be in
some murky territory, and be prepared to invest, if you
really want to do something different.
Evan Williams, founder of Blogger, Twitter and Medium
How do you do it?
10x better
UBER / HAILO
Candy Crush
Supercell / Clash of Clans
WhatsApp
Waze
Tango (geography)
Viber (geography)
KakaoTalk (geography)
Completely New

Snapchat (ephemeral)
Instagram (visual twitter)
Square (+hardware)
Flipboard (iPad)
67 Human Universals

"comprise those features of culture, society,


language, behavior, and psyche for which there
are no known exception."

- Donald Brown, Professor Anthropology, UC Santa Barbara


67 Human Universals
age grading, athletic sports, bodily adornment, calendar, cleanliness
training, community organisation, cooking, cooperative labour,
cosmology (study of the universe), courtship, dancing, decorative
art, divination (predicting the future), division of labour, dream
interpretation, education, eschatology (what happens at the
end of the world), ethics, ethno-botany (the relationship between
humans and plants), etiquette, faith healing, family feasting, fire
making, folklore, food taboos, funeral rites, games, gestures, gift
giving, government, greetings, hailing taxis,* hairstyles, hospitality,
housing, hygiene, incest taboos, inheritance rules, joking, kin
groups, kinship nomenclature (the system of categorising relatives),
language, law, luck superstitions, magic, marriage, mealtimes,
medicine, obstetrics, pregnancy usages (childbirth rituals), penal
sanctions (punishment of crimes), personal names, population policy,
postnatal care, property rights, propitiation of supernatural beings, puberty customs,
religious ritual, residence rules, sexual restrictions,
soul concepts, status differentiation, surgery, tool making, trade, visiting,
weather control, weaving.
Make something people want
Average age of founders: 34-37

Average time to $1B: 7 years


If youre offered a seat on a rocket ship,
dont ask what seat.
Just get on.

Eric Schmidt to Sheryl Sandberg


givemeicecream.com