[Update] Successful scaling: What startups can learn from Breaking Bad

Breaking Bad is a great opportunity to discuss the important topic of successful scaling.

  • it is the main reason startups fail
  • it is not talked about, and loosely defined

Successful scaling is about growing in size and complexity in a sustainable manner.

This means…

  • growing in size: larger or additional markets, larger customer base, additional customer segments, larger product/service portfolio… larger teams
  • growing in capacity: greater quantities and quality of product & services, increased customer care, …
  • growth in complexity: recruitment, procurement, distribution, partnerships, competition…
  • while maintaining a sustainable  business over time
Screen Shot 2015-11-09 at 14.21.07
Breaking Bad is a great story of successful scaling, that more than one entrepreneur would find aspiring, in addition to the similarities it bears with the journey of building a startup:
  • a broke and sick high school science teacher (and a junkie high-school drop-out)
  • start with limited resources, but strong ambition and great business acumen
  • design a “killer product” Blue Crystal
  • pile millions from producing and selling large amounts of it
  • becomes a drug lord: successfully grows his “business” and navigates the increasingly hazardous environment of drug cartels, kills his competitors to create his drug empire.


Screen Shot 2015-11-09 at 14.21.19

Let us take you through this journey, and illustrate 4 lessons to be learnt, understand who is the real unicorn, and more…


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