Episode 136

From Rock Bottom to Exiting with Don McLaughlin

This week on The Exit: Don McLaughlin was working as an inhouse lawyer for a consulting firm that served the Fortune 500 when he saw an opportunity to better manage electronic data. Don left to build Falcon Discovery. Entirely bootstrapped, within the first 12 months the business was generating more than $1M in annual revenue. The fast growth resulted in two acquisition offers being made, the first for $2.5M, the second for $5M. Don turned them down both, believing that the business had more growth potential. While that was true, what Don didn’t prepare for was the emotional toll building such a fast growth business would take on him personally. He regretted not taking earlier acquisition offers and describes it as “hitting rock bottom”. It was tough, but he persevered and rebuilt the business, negotiating an exit a year and a half later. Listen to find out how Don pulled through and secured a successful exit after facing enormous challenges.

Don McLaughlin is the Founder & Managing Partner of The Dream Exit Collective. His company helps business owners and entrepreneurs optimize themselves and their businesses, so they can achieve a dream exit on their terms without burning out. Don is a father of three, former trial attorney and serial entrepreneur who hit rock bottom in the midst of growing a multi-million dollar legal tech and consulting firm that served the Fortune 500. He successfully exited that firm after discovering 4 key shifts to maximize company value and build personal resilience, and now helps other business owners do the same.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dreamexitcollective/

His current company: https://www.thedreamexit.com/

For a Free Flippa Business Valuation: flippa.com/freevaluation 


Steve McGarry

An entrepreneur, content creator, and investor based in sunny Tampa, Florida. In 2015, while living in San Francisco, Steve sold his first fintech startup LendLayer to Max Levchin’s (founder of PayPal) consumer finance company Affirm.

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