How one software company is beating the SaaS growth blues

The go-go days of software companies growing like crazy are now firmly behind us.

Data indicates that public software companies have added fewer sources of annual recurring revenue (ARR) in the first quarter of 2023 than they did a year earlier. In fact, that metric declined even more compared to the average quarterly number in 2022.

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It’s tough out there, but not every company is reporting lackluster results. Samsara, which went public in late 2021, recently proved that it is still possible to expand fast, and perhaps even more impressively, that it’s possible to hold on to value even if you listed at the end of a venture capital bubble.

TechCrunch+ caught up with Samsara’s CEO and co-founder, Sanjit Biswas, to talk about his company’s performance and the pricing and sales choices that have helped it at least partially buck the slowdown.

Let’s start with a quick refresher on Samsara and its IPO pricing. Then, we’ll explore its first-quarter performance and dig into how its sales model is providing it with a more durable revenue base than most other modern software companies.

The Samsara growth story

It’s fun to go back and read 2021-era coverage, because it was such a wild time. We even noted during Samsara’s IPO pricing run that it felt like no one was paying attention:

One more note before we can sign off on this topic for the day: Doesn’t it feel like a somewhat muted day for a decacorn IPO? Samsara raised venture rounds through a Series F! And yet this IPO feels like it’s skating right under the radar.

At the time, we hypothesized that NFT hype was consuming all the oxygen in the room, or that there were so many IPOs that year that it was just not as exciting as before. Ah, what a good problem to have!

Samsara’s late-2021 IPO set it up to raise capital and go public at a valuation that made little to no sense. We saw that happen to a number of other companies that went public in 2021.

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