Saman Izadiyar, founder of Ottit, shares his take on the financial strategies, best practices, processes, and habits of successful DTC brands.
Saman Izadiyar is a numbers guy. His passion for finances led him into a mission to serve fast-growing DTC brands through Ottit, a financial services company. Our CEO, Adii Pienaar, and Saman, discuss common practices of today’s business world and challenge you to question them.
In this episode, you’ll learn:
- How budgets are a false ceiling for DTC brands
- Technology, tools, processes, and habits that set DTC brands up for success
- What clarity can do for your business
Meet Saman Izadiyar
Saman has always had a passion for numbers. His background in finance and prior experience in the ecommerce world have allowed him to build on a mission to serve growth-driven DTC brands.
In 2021, Saman founded Ottit, a financial services business to help brands with bookkeeping so they can scale faster and better.
Before Ottit, Saman co-founded Bloomy Wellness, a supplements brand for kids which was acquired in 2022 by a private purchaser.
The Checkout episode 38 unpacks:
In today’s episode, Adii Pienaar, and Saman Izadiyar walk us through their recommendations for building successful businesses, including processes, habits, and tools. Here are the highlights:
[0:23] Saman’s journey entering the DTC space
- How Saman’s love for clothing got him into the reselling business at 18 years old
- A terrible experience at the start of his career when he was scammed for $30k
- The workarounds that got him over challenges as he started his wholesale business
[2:23] The challenges brought by Covid-19
- How Saman had to pivot to a mask DTC business during the pandemic and ended up selling 3 million masks.
[4:50] Daily habits that will set you up for success
- A business owner's worst financial mistake
- The one thing Saman does as a daily practice to keep his finances on point
- Saman’s proven strategy to project revenue
[4:50] Book recommendation - Simple Numbers by Greg Crabtree
- Why you should do bookkeeping for your business on a weekly basis
- Greg Crabtree says, “Don’t budget, project or forecast” instead
- “Projecting out or forecasting out, both revenue and expenses, put you in a position to take action”
- “Your business is entirely different from day to day. You don’t know what’s going to happen”
[9:14] Budgeting — to do it, or not to do it?
- “I think budgets are very good if you have no discipline with money. And I think they're very bad, if you're putting a ceiling. So it, it goes both ways”
- How bookkeeping will tell you the full story you need to know about your business
[16:47] Building clarity within your business
- “The clarity that you can showcase to someone not only has a representation of your business, but it even tells the person that's investing in — these guys care, these guys are on it, these guys know what's happening in their day-to-day operations, and that it is somebody that they can trust in and give more money to if you're going that route”
- How Ottit’s financial back office services help businesses build the clarity they need to succeed
- Automating processes to keep assets and expenses organized
[23:21] Reporting sales on a cash basis vs. accrual basis
- Why you should start reporting sales on an accrual basis
- “If you're doing anything on a cash basis, everything will hit your PNL as soon as it's recognized on your bank. But now you don't have a clear idea of what's going on because you don't understand what your assets are”
[33:49] Empowering teams to do great work
- The importance of recognizing the mission of your business and communicating it to the team
- Why you should gamify challenges within your business to incentivize teams
- “When you empower smart, ambitious, and aligned people to work, they can do great things”