CEO Howard Lerman on building a public company and the future of Yext


It’s simply over two years since Yext debuted on the New York Stock Exchange, and to mark the event, I sat down with co-founder and CEO Howard Lerman for an interview.

As Lerman famous, Yext — which permits companies to handle their profiles and data throughout all kinds of on-line providers — really presented onstage at the TechCrunch 50 conference back in 2009. Now, it boasts a market capitalization of almost $2.three billion, and it simply revealed plans to take over a nine-floor constructing in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood, turning it into Yext’s world headquarters.

My interview with Lerman really got here earlier than the announcement, although he managed to drop in a number of veiled hints concerning the firm making an enormous transfer in actual property.

Extra concretely, we talked about how Lerman’s administration type has developed from scrappy startup founder to a public firm CEO — he described holding five-minute conferences with each Yext worker as “one of the best management techniques” he’s ever adopted.

Lerman additionally argued that as on-line misinformation has develop into an enormous challenge, Yext has solely develop into extra necessary: “Our founding principle is that the ultimate authority on how many calories are in a Big Mac is McDonald’s. The ultimate authority on where Burger King is open is Burger King.”

Vowing that he’ll stay CEO of Yext for “as long as this board will have me,” Lerman ended our dialog with a passionate protection of the concept that “a company is the ultimate vehicle in America to effect good in the world.”

You may learn a transcript of our dialog beneath, edited and condensed for readability.

TechCrunch: To start out with a extremely broad query, how do you assume Yext is completely different now than it was two years in the past?

Howard Lerman: One of many issues that’s outlined Yext over time is our steady willingness to reinvent ourselves. You began masking us in 2009 [at] TechCrunch 50, we were a launch company there.

And right here we are actually. One of many cool issues about being public is: It’s a complete gamechanger. It’s a gamechanger not only for entry to capital, nevertheless it’s notably necessary in world markets. And I’m not speaking about capital markets, I’m speaking concerning the markets during which we promote software program. We’ve workplaces now from Berlin to Shanghai.


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