Jesse Mecham: Selling a Budget Spreadsheet, Out of Necessity, to a $4 Million Dollar Business,

Jesse Mecham, founder of You Need A Budget (dot) com

Jesse Mecham was looking for a way to cover his rent expense, as he and his wife got their first baby. “Maybe I can sell my budgeting spreadsheet” … Jesse’s journey from a spreadsheet to YNAB, a $4 mill a year subscription business.

Out of necessity, an amazing product was born, “You Need A Budget” which helps millions of people live a happier life, away from financial frustration, and a way to achieve their financial goals.

We’ll be talking about Jesse’s journey from selling a budgeting spreadsheet to a multi-million dollar easy to use complete budgeting tool, a $65.000 setback at the very beginning of the journey, pricing for success and growing a business with a  remote team.


ONE AWESOME episode with huge learnings we can all apply to take out the mystery en successful entrepreneurs.



What you will learn

  • How getting a baby and Jesse’s income as the only income, forced Jesse to find a solution to cover the rent.
  • How looking for an income made Jesse consider if his budgeting spreadsheet could generate an income.
  • How building a website with a PayPal button enabled Jesse to cover his rent cost in no time.
  • How you should set your pricing for a new product.
  • Be biased towards action, building and shipping your product.
  • Build and shipped the first version of in 9 months
  • How Jesse’s urge to release 2nd version for $65.000 but didn’t validate the quality and had to trash the investment.
  • How Jesse moonlighted for 5 years while working in accounting. Building the courage to quit his job and trust the steady income from, was a year-long struggle.
  • How a successful business owner convinced Jesse it was time to “jump” and go full time, and why …
  • How YNAB switched from perpetual license to subscription (Says) model, made YNAB cashflow negative, rode out the “storm” of growing subscription revenue to a huge success today.
  • Jesse enjoys books on Stoicism, meditation and only occasional business books.
  • Excited about scaling YNAB staff and voice activation and budgeting by voice.




Quotes by Jesse Mecham



Hard realisations




Noah Kagan the guy to listen to for lean startup and Minimum Viable Product, product testing and getting paid before you build your product.

Gay Hendricks – The BIG Leap

Ben Horowitz – The hard things about hard things



Connect with Jesse Mecham @
Web – or …, if you are in a hurry 🙂

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