From Startup to Acquihire: One Founder’s Journey

a start up company

From Startup to Acquihire: One Founder’s Journey

“In 2017 Rachel Elsts Downey founded a podcast production company called Share Your Genius. In 2021 she sold her business to a client as an “acquihire”. In this episode you’ll hear the pros and cons of an acquihire, letting go of underperforming employees and how to distinguish between normal fatigue and burnout,” shares Sam Thompson a Minneapolis business broker and the president of M&A firm Transitions In Business.

Rachel Elsts Downey is the founder of Share Your Genius, a podcast production company that has been helping businesses increase their brand visibility since 2017. Over the years, Share Your Genius has grown into a successful business, generating $500,000 in revenue by 2021.

That’s when Downey was approached by one of her clients with an offer to acquire her business. The client wanted to hire Downey and saw the acquisition of Share Your Genius as the best way to recruit her. After some deliberation, Downey accepted the offer and agreed to be “acquihired”. This deal valued Share Your Genius in the mid-six figures and provided Downey with cash for her business, a secure salary, bonuses, and some equity in the acquiring company.

In this episode, Downey shares her experience of going through an acquihire. You’ll discover how to:

  • Evaluate the pros and cons of an acquihire.
  • Utilize a little-known goal-setting technique.
  • Balance the demands of running a business with the responsibilities of parenting.
  • Let go of an underperforming employee without upsetting your customers.
  • Distinguish between serious burnout and normal fatigue.
  • Avoid overlooking critical details during due diligence.

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