From 0 to $25m – The iCracked Story

iCracked founder started the company from his dorm room. Four years later, the company is making $25 million in revenue. Here's how he did it.

February 7, 2015

Hustle Con is a badass conference where the best non-technical founders (like AJ here) teach how they got started and give practical advice on growing your startup. This is part of a weekly series of stories where we profile top, successful hustlers. Check it out →
If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and walks like a duck then it must be a duck.

Right? Nope.

On the surface, iCracked looks like a $25.2m a year smartphone (and tablet) repair company. But it ain’t.

I mean, yeah, iCracked did do $25.2m in revenue last year. But not from repairing phones. In fact, they don’t make a cent from repairs.

If you haven’t heard of iCracked, they’re an on demand device repair service, YC graduate, and one of the fastest-growing startups in Silicon Valley. Oh yeah – and their founder is speaking at Hustle Con.

In this infographic, we explain exactly how AJ Forsythe, the 26 year founder of iCracked, grew his company to $25 million in revenue by selling iPhone parts.

At Hustle Con, AJ taught attendees how to turn small, seemingly unscalable services and products into huge, successful business models with millions in revenue. Wanna see his presentation? Check it out.

Our takeaways

Humble beginnings – On the outside, starting a company looks like so much fun, but AJ was just scraping by for the first few years. Even though he was working 80+ hour weeks, iCracked only did $250,000 the first two years so he was most likely paying himself next to nothing.

Patience – iCracked didn’t start scaling their business for 2 years. They’re still not even close to being at scale. Reading TechCrunch makes growth look so fast and easy. It ain’t. It takes time.

Getting into YC without being technical – I was pleasantly surprised to read that AJ and Anthony, neither of whom know how to code, were accepted into YC without having a technical person on the team. They hired their first engineer after getting in.

Infrastructure – With the right infrastructure, anything can scale. My biggest takeaway with iCracked is the importance of being an architect, not just a do-er. Instead of going after the quick but small-time sales, iCracked spent the time to build a scalable and repeatable process. Now, instead of fixing a handful of phones a week, they built a huge network of iTechs and drive so much traffic that they’re able to earn massive amounts of revenue from selling parts.

Did you dig this?

Enter your email and we’ll send you more infographics just like this one, once a week. And if you really loved it, then come to Hustle Con on May 13th in Oakland, CA.

Hey! Looks like you’re on a small screen… Since this is a big ole’ infographic we’d recommend checking it out on a bigger device.

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