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Where we start and where we end up are two things that are so incredibly different, but equally important when evaluating success. As a rising entrepreneur from South Africa, Jonathan Cogley exemplified this journey and showcased how much can be achieved with tenacity and passion. Jonathan is the CEO at LogicBoost Labs, a startup accelerator in San Diego designed to help B2B startups go from $0 in revenue to $1 million.
After growing up in Johannesburg, South Africa, Jonathan moved to the UK after graduating college, where he pursued a degree in microbiology and genetics. He shared how difficult it was for him to find work with that degree in the UK, so he went on to attain a Master’s in Computer Science to expand his breadth of career options. He stumbled across many fields over time, working in hospitals, consulting companies, and eventually BBC – a job he greatly enjoyed. A few years later, he took a big step and moved across the pond to the United States. He lived in Pennsylvania for a couple years and then proceeded to move to Washington D.C., where he started his first services business. Here, he was able to grow his business to $2 million a year in consulting revenue, but soon realized his disinterest with the servicing industry given how difficult it is to scale and develop. With that, he decided to transition from servicing to software.
Like with any new project, Jonathan ran into many problems with logistics, as he found it difficult for his team of five to effectively figure out how to securely manage servers and routers while maintaining company credentials. This problem influenced the idea for his first successful product, an “IT admins password vault,” which ultimately resulted in a $100 million business.
Some hurdles he encountered on the way dealt primarily with talent acquisition, as he struggled to find people in commercial sales and marketing in D.C. He and his team overcame this by developing their own sales talent by hiring college graduates and sales coaches and introducing talent programs in the D.C. area. In addition to maintaining his startup, he continued to mentor and invest in other companies.
By 2015, he had 60-to-100 hour work weeks and his company reached a plateau in regards to increasing revenue. At this point, he understood the importance of knowing one’s limits and took a year off to recover. During this time, he continued mentoring, looked into different incubators, and chatted with a couple hundred startups. As a “recovering entrepreneur,” he advised and mentored for some time before investing. Soon, he took part in angel investing and learned many things surrounding the startup industry. He realized that despite how much help and money was offered to different companies, their success depended far more on the strength of the team. This revelation in understanding “the formula for what startups need to be successful” encouraged the genesis of LogicBoost Labs.
While still in D.C., Jonathan started looking into San Diego and eventually moved, only to discover how vibrant the tech scene in San Diego is. With LogicBoost, he utilized all his knowledge regarding startup growth and placed more emphasis on hiring people into the company who can offer other startups exactly what they need to flourish but couldn’t find elsewhere. With more money came more investors, so a key component to their mission was maintaining consistent funding so long as company milestones were achieved.
LogicBoost Labs runs processing cohorts and issues applications quarterly, looking specifically for B2B SAAS companies with full time founders (June 30 deadline for current cohort: sign up now!). They invest in approximately one-to-two startups each quarter, with a max initial deal size of $300,000 dedicated towards investments and services. Once a company is accepted into the cohort, there is a two year timeline in which the cohort works with them. LogicBoost Labs has budgeted $2.5 million a year for the next four years, covering all company and investment costs. Going forward, the company is looking to hire consultants or people with experience in sales and marketing. If you or anyone you know is interested, please apply and join LogicBoost Labs in helping startups everywhere grow.
Jonathan’s Favorite Tacos:
Mikes on Newport Ave. He recommends the carne asada nachos!
Connect with Jonathan:
Keep up with LogicBoost Labs:
Thanks to our partners at Cox Business for their support in enabling us to grow the San Diego ecosystem.