Muxu.Muxu’s first financial figures

One of the fundamental values for the team at Muxu.Muxu is transparency. In an ongoing effort to encourage such openness, within the team and indeed across the industry as a whole, we’ve decided to start a series of articles on our financial results. We hope that sharing these results will offer some insight for our readers, and maybe the odd useful tip!

For the first trimester of 2017, Muxu.Muxu saw a turnover of about 140,000 €. This has far exceeded what we had forecasted in our provisional planning. We’d hoped to have reached the 180,000 € mark by the end of our first year — we’ve more or less achieved that figure already!

This revenue was mostly generated by our branding and user-interface design services (80%). Clients include Inch, Lattice, Backtracks, and more recently ReadMe. Our web development services also contributed to a (smaller) portion of the turnover. This tended to be front-end integration for our design clients. Design is a good entry point with many clients, who then ask us to integrate our designs. A small part of the turnover was generated by in-house mobile products, including Foodancy, Koala, Hedwig. About 60% of our turnover came from France, with half from Paris and half from Bordeaux. The remaining 40% came from the US and the EU.

Of course, good fortune and serendipitous meetings have played their part. Starting the contract with Lattice in San Francisco, and working on illustrations for Reech, before starting the studio, enabled us to establish a global reputation. We already had something of a network in place, with people who had been following us on social networks or via Dribbble. When they saw that Muxu.Muxu was launching officially, they contacted us. Producing content in English helps us further build and consolidate our reputation. Even if we don’t reach thousands of people with our articles, our readers are sensitive to the fact that we’re going places, that we’re transparent, and that we’re open about our mistakes as well as our successes.

Almost 70% of our outgoing costs are for external service providers: accounting, administration, legal, design support, content creation and translation services. We’d set aside some of our budget for travel: it’s really important for us to meet the clients “in the field” if we’re to develop their identity. About 3% of our outgoing expenditure is on “swag” — bottles, stickers, even just presents for our clients. We sent a CD-ROM and a little balloon for the recent birthday of one of Inch’s co-founders! These little details help us to maintain a really human and friendly relationship.

We don’t currently pay ourselves salaries — the first will be paid in July. That was really a vote of confidence on the part of the team, who were willing to place a bet on the future of Muxu.Muxu. If everything goes according to plan, we’re also hoping to have recruited a designer and a developer by the end of 2017. Plus we’ve just found new offices. They need a bit of sprucing up but we’ll be able to create a welcoming space, removed from the “French tech” cliché and with enough space to welcome clients.

Through our experience of working with both French and US clients, we’ve learned the importance of paying our service providers as punctually as possible. We’ve had clients who’ve been willing to pay before delivery. We’ve also had french clients whose payment processes have been excessively long-winded. One thing is certain: at Muxu.Muxu we really don’t want money to be an issue when people decide to collaborate with us.

We hope that things will continue as they’ve started — the bar is somewhat higher now than we first imagined. If we want Muxu.Muxu to grow, whilst preserving our core philosophy — no overbearing managers, everyone being responsible for their work, transparency and openness — we really need to expand the team physically in terms of numbers.

We’ve been able to work so productively until now because we all know each other; that all-important relationship of trust was already there. Recruiting fresh talent could be a huge opportunity. But failure to make the right recruitment choices could represent a challenge, even a threat. Our next — inevitable — step is something of a double-edged sword. Muxu.Muxu’s real value lies in its distinctly human element. It’s why people like us, because we pride ourselves on creating strong relationships.

Another piece of exciting news is that we’re set to launch new paying products. By the end of the year we hope these products will represent 25% of our income. We’re aware of the mountain to climb, but feel confident that we’re more than capable of this one.

We’re indebted to all those who support us daily without knowing it: Emily, Ben, Cathy, Arnaud, Lauren, Romain, Elsa, Victor and Mathieu.

We’re also very grateful for the support that comes in via Twitter and Dribbble: that feedback is so valuable. Finally, a big shout out goes out to the Muxu.Muxu team and all of our clients — it’s the intersection of the two that Muxu.Muxu is all about.

Thank you for reading 💚

Article written by the amazing Emily Fiennes