Why Daily Cash Visibility Matters
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On this episode of the Treasury Update Podcast, hosted by Strategic Treasury, join Trovata’s CEO and Founder, Brett Turner as he discusses his career experience in the start-up world and how he learned why having a daily and complete picture of your cash position matters. Listen now to better understand the concept of rich, daily cash position tracking, steps to achieving true cash visibility, and ways to overcome key cash visibility challenges.
Craig Jeffery: Welcome to the podcast, Brett!
Brett Turner: Yeah. Thanks, Craig! Thanks for having me!
Craig Jeffery: I love this topic, “Why real-time cash visibility matters?” But I know that’s a huge area of focus in your current role, and that’s a part of your career now. But I just wonder if it’d be okay if you just gave us a bit of a background on some of your career highlights. And then, I just want a quick overview of Trovata for those who may not be familiar with it. So maybe, you’ll just tell your career highlights first.
Brett Turner: Yeah, absolutely. And we’re talking real-time, so it feels like my career has been… Being in startups, it just seems like there’s nothing not real-time or not high-impact. Things move pretty quickly in the startup world. But yeah, a little over twenty years’ experience going back to my day starting out as a CPA at Deloitte. I moved into high-growth startups, though, a couple of years into my career in the Seattle area. And I was a controller for a few high-tech, high-growth companies. A lot of time spent in ERP systems and financial reporting really as a GAAP specialist in a lot of ways. And that carried me through for a few years, three different companies. And then, these are in startup environment. So in a lot of ways, I’m sort of…
Trovata being my seventh startup. So in the early days, at my first three startups, I was learning, I suppose, more about what not to do than to do. Great learnings! But all three companies actually ended up failing. I felt like I was getting an MBA in every one of these companies. And even my family would say like, “How are you becoming successful and getting better at being in failed companies?” In those days, I was just learning so much and I would kind of have my own post mortem after each company that… And a couple of these were high-profile startups. One of them was a billion-dollar startup called Teledesic. It was broadband via satellite. Bill Gates and Craig McCaw came together. So I think a lot of it was helping shape and be discerning.
Where I was always heading in my careers is wanting to be entrepreneurial and start something at some point down the road when I was ready but really taking this accounting finance track to get there. I took some time off from those three startups and went to work at Amazon, managing their SEC reporting, and then moved into a CFO role where that sort of intersected a lot on the cash side. I was a CFO for three different venture-backed startups.
And now, post-Amazon, that’s when things really started to click. This company World Wide Packets was in the telecom space. We had just an amazing team, and we built that company up and then later sold it, successfully sold. It had an incredible run. And that’s sort of for me, in the startup world, where I put all the pieces together as an operator, learned so much. And that’s also where I just had to pivot around understanding cash and cash flow and started to experiment with getting cash or data from the bank, marrying that up with data from the ERP system, and sort of building my own modeling around cash models for cash forecasting that really became my CFO dashboard. And I had my whole team manage a part of that, which really became a big part of this, almost a near real-time, FP&A tool all centered around cash. And that became just from there on out really the only way to help me, which I felt was so needed to really manage the business and manage the business effectively because I just got so many insights as to what was going on.
So that and then also the third of those three startups over that 10-12 year period, one in cloud computing, had a front-row seat to the whole digital transformation in IT. It was a company called 2nd Watch. We became the first premier consulting partner with AWS back in the early days of the cloud migrating companies like Coca Cola and other bigger companies to AWS. And really those two segues, this digital transformational wave in tech and then also really steeped in cash management and sort of reinventing myself around accrual-based accounting and financial reporting to more of cash forecasting and real-time cash visibility or as close to it as I can (even in those days, a little more archaic in that toolset), really kind of set up the run to seeing a huge opportunity that we’ve been really enacting and really driving toward at Trovata.
Craig Jeffery: To summarize, your career is, you spent your time in three companies learning what not to do by failing, and then you journeyed through three companies learning what to do, and now you’re pulling it all together at Trovata. Now, I know that’s a bit tongue in cheek at the end there. One of the things you said was interesting because you talked about… You had an FP&A tool that gave you a view towards cash, a real-time view towards cash. And this may be interesting or may not be interesting, but when I think of FP&A, I always think of a focus on income, not on cash, not on balance sheet items. So can you just explain that piece? Or was that just an addition so that you could have the liquidity view?
Brett Turner: This company, World Wide Packets, it was a high-profile startup when it started. It started right before the telecom bubble burst in 2000-2001. I had joined in 2005 when Madrona, the big VC out of Seattle, led a new round of capital to really reboot the company. And so I came in on that wave with a new executive team and was part of that really pivoting the business around business services, coming to basically run and, in a lot of ways, sort of fix a lot of what was broken at the time and then really set up for this next run that we all saw coming was the opportunity.
So part of it was kind of doing my own conventional playbook. In a lot of ways, I was pulling… The first thing I would do was set up a data lake, get all of the data I could out of my ERP system. And then, I would use that to get a good basis for financial reporting and really disseminate or democratize that data essentially to the business, the key business stakeholders. And we had a really good cadence at that time.
The problem is, obviously, it wasn’t fresh enough or relevant enough. It’s old news. And when you need something that… When you’re moving so fast and you need to get really great visibility… I started to turn to more bank transactions and started to look at… As things were transacting, I could just get better, more real-time visibility. The problem is, the bank data wasn’t that intelligent. So it’s like if I could marry up more of the intelligence from the ERP system with the aspect of getting bank transactions at least even prior day, which is way faster than after a month-end close and rolling into your reporting cycle, which is by that time 45 days late… Who cares in the startup world? If I could marry that up, though, in more of this real-time cash data and I could categorize it, if I could shape that in more functional areas, almost like I’m doing cash accounting in some ways, that would give me really good insights of what was going on, almost like this real-time cash basis P&L. And if I could do that, I could start to get really predictive and back into my balance sheet assumptions for planning and then also, most importantly, driving really predictive insights into my cash balance. And that’s how we got really good with all of that.
It practically killed me because it took about a year and a half to build. And it was all kind of on the side. I was acting as basically my own product manager building these models on the side. But once we sort of cracked that code and had that, it just became an incredible dashboard and just great insights of really marrying up the best of both worlds. And then, I could see what was going on, what was…
A lot of the trend analysis, a lot of the things that were happening just became these indicators of where our cash was going. And at that time, even though we’d raised $65-70 million at Word Wide Packets, we were competing also with Cisco and Juniper, the big telecom vendors. And we were innovating, building out a whole new class of products, a world-class product at the time. And we were selling to companies like AT&T and Comcast. So if you think about that… I mean, $70 million dollars is still not a lot of money. We spent 25 million just building our flagship product in the space. We were burning 2-2.5 million a month. Every dollar, though, was crucial. And so we had to be really efficient. And then, from there, the way we reported our numbers, the way we just gave insights to the board, we rallied our entire financial reporting around cash metrics, and it was really cool. And I think the biggest part, it just gave me a tremendous amount of confidence to then making really good decisions and quick decisions because we had this data that was really fresh, highly relevant. And it just helped us not just be opportunistic and sort of get ahead of the curve, but also it could help us predict. If there was a problem, it would be sort of that canary in the coal mine really quickly before we just went down that path and then had to unwind. So it just became incredibly valuable to operate the business. And it was something our senior team, our board, everybody appreciated because it just gave us that great visibility on what was going on.
Craig Jeffery: So there was definitely faster visibility and better visibility, which helped with decisions. But as we think about the topic of real-time cash visibility… I think you’ve covered most of what that looked like, but maybe you could just describe it more fully. When you think of real-time visibility, do you refer to just cash or does it include other assets like your overall balances, your forecast?
Brett Turner: Yeah, so maybe the quick segue is, World Wide Packets went on to sell. I had a good exit, went on to then start a couple of companies. And I took these tools with me. That became sort of the CFO dashboard. And I think over time, it just got a little bit better. I would infuse some additional information into that, and those tools just got a little bit better and a little bit better until…
Part of it was then seeing the opportunity with starting Trovata. And it was really predicated on that. It was predicated on, “Let’s take this to the next level. Could we do it at scale?” And at the time, these were these collections of models or spreadsheets that I would have or my team would have to update. And I would use it periodically, at least once a week, and refer to it. It just obviously wasn’t scalable. It wasn’t a product. Even though VCs would get the model and say, “Hey, I want to send this to all my portfolio companies because they could have this great way to manage it because I love getting the insights that you sent. It’s just a better way to kind of see what’s going on,” but it wasn’t that way. I’d get a call from the CFO from one of the portfolio companies, and he was like, “Okay, I’m supposed to ask for this special model that you’ve got. What have you got? Cook it up!” And I was like, “What?” He was like, “This isn’t just gonna be “I’m passing around this spreadsheet,” and then explain it and what”… There was no instruction manual that I could… It’d take me months to sort of write. So it didn’t work in that way. And so I think that was the thing, though.
What really surprised me, I think, going back after a number of years and after then a couple of other startups (and those sold off and did well), then seeing the opportunity for just… The next wave of digital transformation is gonna happen in banking and finance. Fintech is off and running. None of that, though, is really intersecting on the wholesale side of the bank or more mid-market, enterprise, that side of things. And so I started to look back at my days at World Wide Packets and just started seeing what was in the market. I was just amazed. I couldn’t believe that nobody had ever really built anything like this and that there was still such a dearth of tools. I think that was where being able to…
We built Trovata in a way to bring this to everybody. Everybody’s had this base core need. And then, it just depended on what level of need do you have. Is it really complex? But there is a base level, for sure. Cash is king in every business. Everybody needs something, and it’s just how much they have. So I think part of it, though…
It’s kind of getting back to your question. The big thesis was, if we could, at scale, be able to start with that base record, that line item in the bank, which is a bank transaction, the nice thing is that if you see it in the bank, you can count on it, you can bank on it. There’s a reason why you say that. Every 99.99% of all business transactions settle in cash, so you know that they occurred. So if we could start with that base record of truth, a bank transaction, it doesn’t have a lot of intelligence but you know for sure that it happened, then we could sort of walk up. So if you think of the ocean, if it’s water running from the mountain all the way into the ocean, the bank being sort of the ocean of transaction settlement… If we kind of walk up the hills and the valleys and up to the mountains, we could start to integrate (with ERP being a big one of those but other systems too) through the whole quote-to-cash process and we could start to augment, tie into that record, and really go after the origin of that record. What is the origin story of that record? What happened? What was going on? There are insights and intelligence with ERP and other business systems, and we can start to pull that together as we go. And that’s when you start to get and automate some of the aspects of FP&A where it’s… Yeah, it’s all cash-based. It’s not accrual-based, but you get this super-fast real-time intelligence. And for me, it’s sort of reinventing myself from the GAAP world and financial reporting into kind of getting this data that much faster, feeling like the future is unlimited in terms of we could cross over and do something at scale, where you’re getting that kind of real-time intelligence and that kind of predictive analytics off of that. Then, it could change the face of financial reporting, let alone just getting better visibility into your cash from a treasury standpoint.
Craig Jeffery: There’s a number of things that you said that are interesting. One thing that you… Your history from a GAAP perspective, I always think about the timing there since we’re talking about speed. Monthly statements are coming out on the 10th or the 15th or maybe the 5th or the 4th. It’s so delayed. And treasury is like, “Oh, prior days are not good enough. We need a current day.” But this idea of this real-time. How real-time is real-time? Are we just getting faster? Do we need to be almost instantaneous? And your idea of moving up the hills to the mountains where the source comes from. How do you define real-time? And is it different at the bank or at the source system?
Brett Turner: A lot of times, it’s when you think of building a startup and kind of learning those aspects as I’ve done for many, many years. At the end of the day, it’s about assessing risk in a lot of ways. Just like in treasury or in finance here, you become a professional risk manager because when building a company, there are just so many moving parts and you’ve just got to look ahead and you’re constantly mitigating all of the things. You need to know what the uncontrollables are, so you can start to respond to those. You wanna be able to obviously know and have a really solid deep dashboard of all the things that are in your control and you now know what those things are, so you can impact it. And so many of those… It is just about mitigating risk and working through that whole process. But I think when you kind of look at…
There are two things, I think, on defining real-time. One is, from that risk standpoint, it’s just a lot can happen now, even in a day. The world is speeding up massively. You think of how real-time has impacted other areas like trading stocks. High-frequency trading is now table stakes for how it’s done in the market and responding to and trading in the market today. If you look at other aspects of just how we gather our news, stuff hits Twitter in seconds. And we’re not waiting till the evening news at six o’clock with Dan Rather in the day as many years ago. So it’s like, when you kind of just look at the speed of information that’s moving so fast, in a lot of ways you just have to have that because that’s what the world is now run by. If you don’t have that, it’s gonna be hard to really be proactive and compete in some ways because you’re always gonna be behind.
And if the rest of the business is starting to rely on things that are really, really fast, the treasury world, the finance department, the accounting, it’s just how do you respond to that when everybody’s expecting you to have that same speed of information and you don’t? So you just look and feel like a dinosaur. And then, when everybody wants you to… If you want a strategic seat at the table, you have to think in that realm and you have to have information that’s more relevant. So if you’re gonna provide more strategic advice or counsel to the senior team or even advise on a matter to the board, everybody’s expecting again for you to have really hypersensitive information that’s more real-time. If you don’t, then it’s not gonna be as relevant and whoever’s making key decisions is gonna… They’re gonna second-guess that a little bit, and they’re gonna look at other and need other input. So I think part of it is just levelizing to the rest of the world because what’s behind all of the transactions ultimately and the cash, what it’s delivering or driving, what you see as cash is all happening so much faster, and you just need to level up to get on the same page as everybody else.
And I think the other aspect too is just the ability to automate. When you look at so many of the workflows in finance, particularly in treasury, there’s so much that can be automated. And when you’re able to put that on a certain predictable cadence or more real-time, now you can start to… Because that’s where it’s all happening or headed, being able to start to build around that and automate processes around that is really key. So I think those are two things that it really supports. And yeah, I think whether it’s coming in in seconds, it doesn’t have to be that fast. But as long as it’s coming in, I think, every hour or every two hours, I mean, that’s kinda where we need to be at this point.
Craig Jeffery: Two things that I heard you saying was one is speed matters and quality matters. And those two things create a virtuous circle in a sense of getting faster, getting better information. That’s the demand. It doesn’t have to be instantaneous but… Whether it’s every ten minutes or every hour, that might be fast enough for today. But I wanted to expand the conversation on that. I was going to ask you about them. What are the impediments to real-time visibility? And then, how do you get past it? But I kind of wanna combine that. What are the items that act as blockers to achieving real-time or just much faster visibility, and how do we move past that because if you have…? I don’t know if I wanna use your example of the water cascade from the mountains to the hills to the ocean. But if there are dams that are holding stuff that release water whatever, every day, that’s gonna be a gating item. If your bank is only updating some of their systems at night, the fastest you can get it is the next day because there’s a delay there. And the same thing is if the information comes in, but your internal process can only update stuff every four hours. You’re building in these delays. So maybe you could talk to some of the key impediments and how we get past them or how we think we’ll be able to move past these over time.
Brett Turner: Normally, there’d be three impediments. But I’ll tell you, I think things are changing a little bit. So the first impediment has always been technology. Do you have the tech to be able to do these kinds of things? That’s no longer an impediment. In fact, tech has been ready for a few years now. And it’s not a technology problem, a lot of what we all see and experience in many other areas. You’ll just pick up your mobile phone and download an app, just use something that’s more of a modern user experience in a lot of other applications. We’ll look at that and say, “Well, why isn’t that in this space?” And a lot of that, it just hasn’t made its way. And so that’s a big part of what we’re doing at Trovata. We’re taking what’s available, and we’re applying it to the space. And that looks radically transforming. It is because it hasn’t been applied yet. But it’s not unprecedented because it’s been done in the other areas of tech. In fact, it’s sort of table stakes in other areas of tech, and we expect it there. It just hasn’t happened in this space. So that is no longer an impediment and… A perfect example is what we’re doing at Trovata. Even over the last couple of years, just our traction in the market has proven it now with so many different companies. And our growth is kind of validating that.
The second one is more of the banks. And that’s been… Because, again, if you’re gonna get bank transactions more in real-time, then do the banks have the right tech? And traditionally, that has been “no”. They’ve been behind that. But the changes that have happened in the last few years in wholesale banking have been just incredible improvements. And the progress, even though it’s never gonna be lightning-fast, is definitely quickening. And it’s really exciting to see what happens. So a lot of the big banks are being able to… I mean, all of them are rallying around APIs, APIs being the way in which they can now deliver next-gen banking services, they can deliver data, and they can deliver it with other folks like Trovata who can bring and update these user experiences and connect to that. So it’s a way to just communicate in ways that are very productive to solve a lot of the end-user and customer problems that they have. And their customers have been raising their hand for quite some time. But they’re responding. They’re delivering the APIs, and that’s it. That’s huge because that’s really that step of transformation now that can carry on and take place. So I would say we’re right in the middle of that. So it’s still somewhat of impediment because it depends on who you bank with, it depends on where they are, with what APIs. And in some ways, we’re just warming up. We’ve got some base APIs, but there are more APIs that are coming and that’s… So we’re right in the middle of that.
Craig Jeffery: So the tech is out there. Some of the banks are delivering on that. You have this layer that can interact via APIs that’s at the front end or customer-facing. But a lot of banks have a lot of really old tech, fairly old tech behind the scenes that they’ve got to… If it’s gonna be real-time, they still have to get it so that it can get pushed out to the layer that can interact at an API level. And they may be working with a lot of tech debt that is there. Is that a big impediment?
Brett Turner: They’re finding ways to work through that. Of course, I mean, at the end of the day, banks are gonna need to upgrade their core systems. And that’s not something that happens overnight. I mean, they’re still kind of run by mainframe computing, right? But if you think of the volume at scale that they operate with, you’re having to rebuild from scratch. And these are years and years and years. And then, even the migration itself is just so daunting. It cannot even be done, right? So there’s just incredible risk.
So that’s what has happened. Why it’s taking so long is that those barriers have been so high that there hasn’t been maybe that compelling event that’s really caused the banks to have to do it. All of a sudden, you look at what’s happened in the last couple of years with COVID. I would say, that’s a compelling event. And so now, it’s like all of the banks… Because if you think of real-time, then all of a sudden, from a risk standpoint, all of the customers and clients are panicking because of not having great visibility. They need that. They’re hollering at their banks that they need that and need that tech advancement.
That’s really what’s driving a lot of this, but they’re getting around it in the, I would say the workaround. I mean, they’re building data lakes. They’re doing internal integrations to feed data into those data lakes. They’re building APIs to access those data lakes to be able to deliver that data through the APIs. And so, I mean, if you think about it, I mean, that will need to get faster, better, all of that and be more efficient internally with how they’re doing that. But that’s sort of the basics of what needs to take place. They’re doing that, and it’s working. It’s now opening up that handoff, pass the baton to a company like Trovata to then be able to take that data and do all these things with it downstream for the clients. And the clients are responding, “Thank you! This is what we need.” And that’s evolving. We’ve got constant conversations about, “Okay, all of these new things that we…” There’s a lot of stuff that we’ve done today, but with all these new things right now, it opens up the possibilities. And those conversations are really lively and really exciting. So those possibilities, all of a sudden, just opened up. The ceiling really starts to go way, way up.
And so that’s why I say it’s not… I wouldn’t say it’s an impediment. I think it’s a work in progress, but it’s not an impediment. It’s happening today. I mean, we’re delivering real-time data for several banks to our clients today. In a couple of years, we’ve grown from 0 to over 130 midmarket and enterprise clients. These are big companies. We’ve got some that are 13-14 billion in revenue clients. We’ve got others that are down to 10 to 15 million, and everything in between. But most of our customers are kind of in that a billion in revenue, or 300 or 400 million in revenue, or 3 billion in revenue, so companies like Square and Etsy and a lot of tech companies. And so when you kind of look at that, they might have… With Square, we have 18 banks, all normalized as part of Trovata, 15 million transactions. And we’re able to deliver that with 300-millisecond response rates with natural language search across that entire dataset.
So those are the things we can deliver, but it doesn’t mean that all APIs or all… With the banks depending on where they’re at in their API journey, just like it was 10 years ago with sort of this journey to the cloud, we’re still kind of in the early innings. Banks are starting to get better or just getting their APIs online. So that experience might be a little different depending on who you bank with or the mix of banks that you have and… But I think that’s just part of that progress. It’s changing, and it’s changing fast. And it’s super exciting.
I would say though the only real impediment today is just ourselves: people making decisions now to kind of move forward. I think, given that… In this space, everybody is a professional risk manager essentially. If you’re a professional risk manager, you’re probably gonna be careful or maybe conservative of when you move into making these kinds of buy decisions, but… So I would say, honestly, that’s becoming the biggest impediment. I think the more people see their peers, the more they see that environment start to change (and they’re seeing it), then they’ll become more comfortable. They’ll see more reference ability of what’s happening in the market, and we’ll start to see a tipping point in a massive wave. And we’re just not there yet. I know it’s coming. But I think everybody’s gonna feel more comfortable here both from their bank and both on what they see in terms of the tech environment. And it’s only a matter of time before that wave is going to hit.
Craig Jeffery: So the tech issue, the impediment of not having the tech has mostly been solved. I mean, there’s obviously growth from what you’re saying. The banks have it. They’re growing and then maturing. It’s early innings if you use the baseball metaphor that you did. And then, on the receiving side, there’s using the tech but there’s also the mindset of, “How do we scale? How do we use tools that support real-time full-blown API use, this faster environment?” As you talk through these impediments in the mindset, you mentioned COVID. Talk a little bit about how that helped in this visibility. I know it helped in many other areas with payments, with expectations, with work from home and processes. Maybe, you could share some of your thoughts in this area.
Brett Turner: In the world of tech and adoption, speed of adoption, as an entrepreneur, you always look at the compelling event. What’s the compelling event that’s really driving the adoption of new tech? If you look at what we’ve gone through over the last couple of years with COVID, I think two things were going on. Prior to that, it wasn’t that… The world or the speed of information, it wasn’t exactly slow. A lot of other areas, of course, were already akin to getting that information really, really fast, right? Again, whether it’s Twitter or whether you’re gonna get a trade on a stock tip. And everything was just moving so, so fast. But there wasn’t really that… You could really get by without having to have your forecasting model updated or some of these processes maybe not giving you as good visibility as you needed to.
Once COVID hit though, it really exposed a lot of that. That became a compelling event. Everybody went into disaster recovery mode all the way from the board to senior teams. Everybody is looking at the treasurer, the CFO and needing answers because everybody wants the crystal ball: what’s it gonna be like next week? Or what’s it gonna be like tomorrow? Do we have to lay off 30% of our staff? These are really big things and big decisions that we have to work through at the time. Obviously, some companies thrived, some companies are still struggling through this. It’s had a huge, profound effect. And then, you’ve got this aspect of the banks now that have accelerated a lot of their fintech initiatives trying to avoid these things. And that’s become the thing that they’re responding to from their customer.
So I think this aspect of real-time, I mean, it’s really forced that mindset that is now part of best practice. It’s not about just covering the things that need to be covered. It’s about being proactive and always looking out to project in various aspects of what that means and having answers. You’ve got to be able to understand what it means when you have different impacts or aspects that may happen in the market, controllable or uncontrollable. You’ve got to be able to respond and have solid answers of, “What should be our course of action? How should we respond to that event?” And I think that’s not going away anytime soon. I think if anything, everybody’s realizing they’re still not quite there yet. They still don’t feel comfortable.
But I can just say that when I got to a point where all of this information was able to be maintained and I could get it weekly, the information was a lot faster, which helped us be really predictive and really accurate and precise in terms of our assumptions around cash. The correlation of my confidence really to that was through the roof. I could actually speak about the business. I could actually speak confidently about whether we do this or that. I could hang scenario planning off of those kinds of things. The level that I could maneuver as an operator was radically different. If you don’t have the confidence, you’re just tentative, you don’t confidently speak about something or talk about something because you’re not sure. So you’re always speaking in a range of outcomes to hedge. So you’re always moving in this world of reactive and just throwing hedges on top because you can’t ever wanna give a straight answer because you don’t wanna be wrong, right? Or if you have all the information, yeah, you’re gonna be doing some hedging in providing, obviously, the possibilities, but the band in which you’re gonna hedge is gonna go way, way down. So hedge the max, hedge maybe like 10% of what that, and now you can do it because now you have so many answers that you didn’t have before that you can just narrow down. And there are things you don’t need to hedge because you’ve already crossed those off the list because you have the information that’s eliminated those things that could occur.
From my standpoint, in the startup world, everything moves so fast. So for me, it was an essential tool. I had to get there early on in my career. I had to really reinvent myself to sort of get there. But once I got there, it just made the world of difference and… I couldn’t operate without it. I still feel the same way. I can’t operate without that aspect. Everybody wants to operate with confidence. When you don’t have it, it’s not a fun way to live.
After starting his career as a CPA with the Deloitte audit practice, Brett gained progressive experience in corporate finance and accounting managing SEC reporting for Amazon and then becoming VP of Finance for Worldwide Packets (sold for $300M+ in 2008). Across his last three roles as a startup Co-Founder / CFO, Brett has raised over $100M in equity and venture debt financing while helping create over $500M in shareholder value. Brett is a Seattle native, with a BA in Finance from Seattle Pacific University.