From Elon Musk to Exit of His Own
“Within five years from starting The Launch Company, Ben Kellie sold a portion of his company to Voyager Space, a private equity backed group. This episode provides excellent tips for owners looking at selling to a financial buyer,” shares Sam Thompson a Minneapolis business broker and the president of M&A firm Transitions In Business. “Ben also talks about maintaining your intellectual property when doing consulting.”
Ben Kellie got his start in the aerospace industry, helping Elon Musk figure out how to get his rockets to land on a floating barge without blowing up.
In 2015, Kellie left SpaceX to start The Launch Company, where they supply hardware parts and consulting to a growing list of new aerospace companies like SpaceX. Less than five years after starting, Kellie was approached by Voyager Space, a private equity-backed group rolling up new space companies. Kellie sold a majority stake in The Launch Company but held on to a sizeable chunk giving Kellie financial security for his young family and a significant upside in the next chapter of The Launch Company’s development.
Strap on your harness because you’re going to learn a ton in this episode, including:
- What Elon Musk is like to work for.
- How to bootstrap a hardware company without giving up equity.
- How to keep your Intellectual Property when doing consulting.
- The fine line between “crappy and scrappy”.
- How to structure your role as a CEO after an investor puts money into your company.
- The difficultly of separating your ego from what your company needs to reach the next level.