Lessons on Acquisitions and Income Share Agreements with Three-Time Founder and Grain CEO Mike Adams


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Today’s guest is Mike Adams, Cofounder and CEO of Grain, a SaaS platform that records, transcribes, and shares highlights from Zoom video calls. Mike shares his history in the tech field, how he came to identify the need for a system like Grain, and how he founded it. He also mentions the many uses and benefits of the platform and its integrations with other platforms. As the founder of MissionU, which was shut down shortly after being acquired by WeWork, Mike talks through that process, the acquisition, and some of the valuable lessons he learned from its success and demise. Tuning in today, you’ll hear the pros and cons of income share agreements as vehicles to provide access to education and training instead of loans, and the importance of transparency. To find out more about Grain, how it makes money, and other insights from Mike as a successful three-time founder, make sure not to miss this episode!


  • [00:14] An introduction to three-time founder, Mike Adams.
  • [00:57] His history in tech and how he founded Grain.
  • [02:14] What inspired Mike to come up with the concept for Grain.
  • [04:02] Examples of use-cases of Grain, from interview settings and meetings between consultants and clients to general team knowledge.
  • [06:27] How Grain is different from similar products like Gong.
  • [08:16] The benefits of using Grain with embeddable partners like Slack.
  • [10:13] Other integrations, like Zapier, Dropbox Paper, Notion, Coda, and Miro, and the benefits of using embeddable media from Grain through them.
  • [12:00] How Grain makes money through subscriptions.
  • [12:59] Why Mike exited MissionU: not every VC-backed business is appropriately VC-backed.
  • [15:30] Why he didn’t actually make any money on the acquisition and why it was shut down shortly after.
  • [17:14] What he learned from the experience.
  • [17:46] The pros and cons of income share agreements as vehicles to provide access to education and training instead of loans.
  • [20:04] Mike’s history in education and training.
  • [21:22] Mike’s views on loans, financiers, and income share agreements in education and the importance of transparency.
  • [26:20] Mike’s cheat code for healthy living: training for triathlons.
  • [28:54] His favorite business tool and book.

Resources From The Interview:

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