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Brian Halligan, CEO & Founder
|Revenue||$28.5 million (2011)|
HubSpot, Inc. is a marketing software as a service company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States. Its namesake product is also called HubSpot. It was founded at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah in June 2006.
Both had backgrounds in the software industry and reportedly planned to launch new companies to create software for small businesses after earning their degrees. Shah invested the first $500,000 in HubSpot followed by Edward B. Roberts, founder and chair of the MIT Entrepreneurship Center. HubSpot’s co-founders were also semi-finalists in an MIT business plan competition for $50,000 in funding. Two years were spent in discussions before HubSpot incorporated in June 2006. A majority of HubSpot’s early customers, investors and employees were MIT classmates, professors, alumni and community members.
The company was founded on the idea that traditional marketing was broken and the tools needed to do inbound marketing were too complex and disconnected. HubSpot’s investors include General Catalyst Partners, Matrix Partners, Scale Venture Partners, Sequoia Capital, Google Ventures and Salesforce.com. It raised $5 million in Series A funding in 2007 and $12 million in Series B funding in 2008 Another $16 million was raised in a C round in 2009, followed by an additional round of funding for $32 million in 2011 brought total funding to $65 million. In the summer of 2010, HubSpot moved its offices into the Davenport, in the Lechmere neighborhood of Cambridge.
On June 16, 2011 HubSpot announced its acquisition of the marketing automation company Performable,  which was integrated into HubSpot. Performable developed software for analyzing sales and marketing performance, which had triggers for sending email messages based on a visitors’ prior interaction with the company. On August 18, 2011 the company tweeted its acquisition of Laura Fitton's company oneforty. Oneforty began as an app store for Twitter, but evolved to also be a hub of guides, reviews and other information for marketers to learn how to use social media. The acquisition was announced over Twitter, drawing praise from the Wall Street Journal. Oneforty’s catalog of third-party Twitter apps and SocialBase, a social media management system integrated with HubSpot’s app marketplace.
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HubSpot provides software for businesses to coordinate their online marketing efforts. A free product, Marketing Grader, was launched in 2011 to replace Website Grader. It analyzes a range of online marketing activities and then provides a report on what to fix on the website or blog to increase leads.
See Main Article: Inbound marketing
HubSpot uses its blog, social media and free tools to attract prospects to lead-generation content such as webinars. HubSpot’s own marketing has been used as an example for LinkedIn company pages, press releases made for Twitter, content marketing, and viral videos. The company focuses its customer acquisition strategy on providing educational material that customers will value.
HubSpot's Content Management System is written in C#, uses the ASP.Net framework, and runs on IIS web servers. The company's server-side code is in Java with Python and NodeJs. Web servers are hosted primarily in Nginx using Django for Python apps. Databases are a combination of MySQL and HBase. HubSpot runs the CentOS operating system on its Amazon EC2 servers with Windows Server for C# app servers.
HubSpot's hosted products were considered in a private cloud until transitioning to a "hybrid cloud". The hybrid cloud keeps certain functions private, while tapping into the resources of a public cloud that can expand quickly as more resources are needed. HubSpot works with Rackspace and Amazon.com as their cloud vendors.
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HubSpot co-Founder and CEO Brian Halligan is also a senior lecturer at MIT Halligan believes the military-inspired command-and-control principles of leadership don’t take into account technological and societal changes that make knowledge workers more nimble.Brian was also a 2005 Sloan Fellow and an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the MIT Entrepreneurship Center.
HubSpot Co-Founder and CTO Dharmesh Shah is an active member of Boston’s entrepreneurial community. He is an angel investor in more than 30 startups and a frequent speaker on inbound marketing, innovation and startups. Shah believes in making fast decisions and allows business owners to grow their business their own way. He also supports the mantra of “watch your competitors, but don’t follow them,” meaning that becoming overly absorbed in what the competition is doing can dampen innovation. Dharmesh is an advisor to AngelList. He was named as one of the top innovators by the Boston Globe in May 2011 Dharmesh was quoted that he still writes software code, which he says isn’t work, but more like “a calling.”
Corporate Culture 
HubSpot has documented 13 features of its “post-modern culture.”[self-published source?] The company culture was inspired by the AMC television program MadMen. HubSpot created an unlimited vacation day policy on the basis that employees already work through weekends and evenings, so they shouldn’t have to ask for a weekday off. The CEO called the typical corporate vacation policy “a relic of an era when people worked 9 to 5 in an office.” The HubSpot culture has been described as “fun and fast-paced.”
Teams are named after Boston sports teams with employees participating in playful viral videos. HubSpot favors cash perks, saying that ping pong tables and foosball tables only collect dust. For example, senior recruits coming from big companies are offered a “jailbreak” bonus of $1,000 per year they spent working for a big corporation. The company has a free beer fridge, which it says encourages employees to spend time together after work and foster comradery. HubSpot is aggressive about competing for talent. When HubSpot couldn’t find talent to implement HTML5, it offered a $10,000 bounty to anyone who referred a successful candidate.
In 2008 HubSpot salesperson Pete Caputa came up with an idea to increase sales through a partner program, but CEO Brian Halligan didn’t agree with it. Pete spent evenings and weekends working on it until it was so successful, it became his full-time job. Now Pete oversees 30 employees and the partner program accounts for 20 percent of HubSpot’s revenue. This was the start of HubSpot’s startup within a startup program, which supports ideas from employees. HubSpot compares the program to being a venture investor. Most of the programs fail, but come at a low cost.
Growth Strategy 
HubSpot aims to be a 100 year old, multi-billion dollar business comparable to the likes of Hewlett Packard, Salesforce.com, Google or Amazon.com. These were the expectations of the company co-founders since it first spun out of MIT. One growth strategy is in developing an enterprise-level “personalization engine” that would create “the end of static websites that are the same for everyone.” Management believes this is a bigger market opportunity than all of inbound marketing. CEO Brian Halligan identified local, mobile marketing as an opportunity. The company aims to go public. 
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