LeadPages lands $5m from Foundry Group & Arthur Ventures


LeadPagesMinneapolis startup LeadPages has raised a $5m first round of equity financing to scale their rapidly growing SaaS for Internet marketers who create,
deploy and optimize responsive conversion pages.

This deal is the first Minnesota tech investment by Boulder-based Foundry Group, which led the round, joined by Arthur Ventures.

LeadPages was launched roughly a year ago on humble bootstraps — transitioning from marketing training company to marketing software company and nailing a $1m run-rate along the way.  

It all started in response to increasing demand from the blog audience that co founder Clay Collins had created at MarketingShow.com.

Each week, he would release a free landing page template only to find that his audience was continually asking for the ability to modify these landing pages, implement split testing, make the templates mobile responsive and integrate with email service providers and customer relationship management platforms such as MailChimp, ContactContant, and InfusionSoft.

With $40k in advance sales for the product before it was even built, Collins and his co founders Tracy Simmons and Simon Payne developed LeadPages to solve this problem. SMB customers pay a monthly or annual subscription fee for access to the LeadPages platform, a library of customizable landing pages designed for a variety of customer interaction types – from signing up for a webinar, downloading a free whitepaper, to simply capturing names and contact information.

“We designed LeadPages from the ground up to boost leads, sales and revenue with effective landing pages that better capture customer information and convert visitors into customers,” Collins says.

Fast forward through a lot of hustle and 6,000+ paying customers later, Collins says the product has generated millions of new leads, and in many cases, increased conversion rates by up 400 percent or more. LeadPages generated $290k in revenue last month with 20% month over month compound growth; they’re set on tripling both customers and revenue in 2014.

“Our sweet spot has been small business with 1-5 employees…consultants, speakers, authors and other professional service providers. In part, we will be increasing the ability to offer solutions for the larger enterprise with this capital.”

Collins explains that his ability to obtain investment was done without a traditional pitch deck and a lot of back and forth. “Foundy invested after three calls and one face to face meeting, during which we actually made about 15 sales,” he recalls, prompting a tweet directly from VC partner Brad Feld at the time

“The only other firm we approached was Arthur Ventures, who also wanted to partner right away.”

“It’s hard to overstate the importance of the Web for generating customer leads,” said Seth Levine, managing director at Foundry Group. “While a large industry has evolved around the best marketing practices to drive that traffic through ad spending on things such as Google AdWords, much less attention has been paid to where those ads drive customers and what they’re asked to do once they get there.”

“The amount of traction LeadPages has been able to demonstrate in a short amount of time with no invested capital is remarkable.  It’s a testament to the team’s ability to deliver simple and beautiful software that absolutely nails the needs of its customers and wouldn’t have been possible without the scrappiness of Clay and his co-founders.  We’re excited to partner with Clay and Foundry Group to continue to build this great company,” says Arthur Ventures’ Patrick Meenan.

LeadPages co founder Simon Payne will be relocating to Minnesota, while the companies 20 or so full time contractors will convert to full time employees, some of which are also moving to Minnesota as well.

“One of the big reasons we are raising funds is to establish a stronger base here in Minneapolis and we will be growing LeadPages locally,” he assures.


Minnesota startup LeadBrite nails $1m+ annual run rate
Arthur Ventures launches $45m software fund, opening Minneapolis office
The next Capital Call is October 15th with Mark Lazarchic and Patrick Meenan


  • http://www.sethlevine.com sethlevine

    We’re excited to have our first MN investment Jeff. In the months we’ve been working Clay and the team we’ve been really impressed with what they’ve built (and their traction in the market). Exciting times!

    • http://www.marketingshow.com Clay Collins

      BTW folks, sethlevine is a Macalester grad. I’ll be making plenty of trips to Colorado, but my side-agenda is to bring him here from time to time if he’ll let me persuade him.


      P.S. Speaking of Minnesota, have you biked up Lake Superior’s North Shore? Views from the road look like this: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/75/Palisade_Head,_North_Shore_of_Lake_Superior,_Minnesota.JPG

      • http://twitter.com/casey__allen Casey Allen

        Always Be Recruiting.

        (And know thy audience.)

        One more reason, besides his boyish good looks, why homeboy Clay will build a $200m platform in seven years.

  • http://www.marketingshow.com Clay Collins

    Thanks to @sethlevine:disqus and the folks at Foundry Group and Arthur Ventures (including Patrick Meenan) for what’s already proven to be a very enjoyable partnership. Despite long rants ( see http://tech.mn/news/2013/04/06/fundraising-in-minnesota-minnebar-8/ ) about why entrepreneurs don’t need to raise funding, we couldn’t have found better partners, and our entire team is excited about the road ahead and our future in Minnesota.


    • http://bobtheteacher.com/ Bob The Teacher Jenkins

      I’ve loved seeing this company grow from a relatively close proximity. What I love most about the folks behind LeadPages is their combined passion for amazing software, understanding of market needs for the small business world, and consistency of innovation. Proud to be part of the first chapter! Kudos Clay, Tracy, Simon and team!

  • James Burgum

    Congrats Clay, Simon, Tracy and the entire team! We are excited to be in partnership with you guys and look forward to the opportunity ahead!

    • http://www.marketingshow.com Clay Collins

      Thanks, James. I’m glad that this this fling we’ve been having with you and @sethlevine:disqus at Foundry is now official and we can talk about it in the open :-). My poker face was wearing thin.

  • Daren Cotter

    Congrats Clay & Team! Clay, we should know each other…I reached out via LinkedIn.

    • http://www.marketingshow.com Clay Collins

      Hi Daren. I don’t really remember my LinkedIn info. I’m at Twitter @claycollins however. Would love to hear from you there.

  • Joe Serrano

    Way to go Clay and LeadPages team!
    Thanks Foundry Group for doing what you do as well.

    • Guest

      Thanks, @49c02fe27c78c55755cb7d228d830c31:disqus!

    • http://www.marketingshow.com Clay Collins

      Thanks, Joe!

  • Thompson Aderinkomi

    I am so glad I heard about you (Clay) on Mixergy and super excited to see what you guys do in what I know will be a short period of time.

    • http://www.marketingshow.com Clay Collins

      Thanks, Thompson!

    • http://twitter.com/casey__allen Casey Allen

      The awesome interview that @thompsonaderinkomi:disqus mentioned is here: http://mixergy.com/clay-collins-lead-player-interview which got an astonishing 72 comments from the audience afterwards, 10x the norm. Clay fucking brought it.