Peter Hamilton: Bootstrapping + Hypergrowth [Built in Seattle Ep. #34]
1 min read

Peter Hamilton: Bootstrapping + Hypergrowth [Built in Seattle Ep. #34]

Peter Hamilton, former CEO at TUNE, talks about finding profitable growth AND finding hypergrowth, team vs family, and his path from CMO to CEO.

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TUNE grew to $80M ARR and 350 people over the last 7 years, resulting in two acquisitions.

Peter Hamilton went from opera singer to marketer to CMO and then TUNE's CEO.

He raised $36M from top VCs, but it wasn't the typical VC-backed startup. They started with a bootstrapped and profitable first product. That led them to think differently. Out of their first product came a very different second product.

Through it all TUNE focused on doing more with less, learning how to build a team instead of a family, and innovate in their approach to brand and customer service.

This led to two separate acquisitions in 2018 and 2020.

Peter shares his story on this episode of The Built in Seattle Podcast

Episode Highlights

  • How responding to a Craig's list post changed his life.
  • Why you can't predict the future.
  • The transition from CMO to CEO.
  • How they bootstrapped a chef program and served meals to 200+ employees every day.
  • Why TUNE became two businesses inside one.
  • How to build a culture around customer service.
  • The transition from bootstrapping to VC-backed.
  • How opera singing is similar to company building.
  • The story behind TUNE's two acquisitions.
  • Lessons on building a SaaS brand.
  • Why startups work better as a Team than a Family.

Peter Hamilton Bio

Peter is a seasoned technology executive as well as an active advisor and investor in tech startups with passionate founders. As the former CEO of TUNE, he built the company’s path to market, raised $36.4M from Accel Partners and Icon Ventures, led the business to over $80M in ARR, and scaled teams to over 350 people across 9 offices worldwide. He went on to lead TUNE’s two major product lines through two separate acquisitions, one to Branch Metrics in 2018, and the second to Constellation Software in 2020.