“The key to success is knowing how to sell your product”
Fabrice Greenbaum is the CEO of Weda, the leading French platform enabling liberal health professionals to handle medical files in SaaS mode. Weda has already attracted a base of over 9,000 clients, mainly doctors, as well as nurses, physical therapists, speech therapists, etc., that the Montpellier-based company trains and supports on its platform. Founded in 2011, Weda generates over 5 million euros in revenue with its 33 employees and a network of about 30 independent experts in France.
Why did you choose Montpellier?
I was born in Deauville, Normandy. I came to Montpellier in 1983 to work for an IBM distributor at a time when personal computers were starting to be rolled out. I created my company here in 1987, but I quickly set up a sales department in Paris. Montpellier has many advantages. For one thing, the city is very attractive. I have hired people from Paris and Lille, both young people and people over 40. Many of them prefer the south of France. We are near the train station and the countryside, with a beautiful garden for relaxing.
What was the main contribution for your success provided by Montpellier BIC and its teams?
I was assisted by Montpellier BIC for three years, from 2011 to 2014. That helped me feel much less alone. It also gave me opportunities to talk with an advisor who shared his vision of the company while helping me to think objectively and elaborate my business plan. He helped me establish a framework of good practices with his outsider’s perspective about the company. Montpellier BIC also introduced me to local financiers Sofilaro and Soridec, both of which acquired equity stakes in Weda’s capital at the time.
What advice would you give to young entrepreneurs who want to start a company?
The key to success is knowing how to sell your product. If I know how to sell it, I can motivate the whole team along with me. That requires a lot of energy. You need to take time to move forward and consolidate your project step-by-step. Above all, you need to have the right people around you, to be supported by people with complementary skills, people with whom you can track the company’s vision regularly in order to grow effectively. Another key to success is to have a business diagram from the outset, enabling fast sales growth and good profitability. Weda’s economic diagram is to have a complete service offering available to customers via subscription, which enables us to benefit from recurring revenue. Never forget that the number-one recommenders of your products are the users themselves. In Weda’s case, it’s the buzz in the physician community that the solution works well.
How do you envision the innovative company of tomorrow in Montpellier?
Service innovation will make the difference: a sustainable service adapted for an identified target on a niche market with wide-scale distribution. Technology evolves rapidly and can be considered old quite quickly. You need to head for markets where your competitors don’t go. Get your product positioned solidly, cover the territory, and protect your innovation.