John Warrillow

Speaker, L&D

John Warrillow

Award-Winning Entrepreneur and Advisor

John Warrillow is the founder of five companies, and the bestselling author of  Built To Sell: Creating A Business That Can Thrive Without You, which was recognized by both Fortune and Inc magazines as one of the best books of 2011, and his new book, The Automatic Customer: Creating A Subscription Business In Any Industry. A regular contributor to and The Globe and Mail, Warrillow was called one of the “Top Ten Business-To-Business Marketers” by B2B Marketing. Assessing businesses for over 15 years, he shares his expertise in areas ranging from entrepreneurship, sellability, and the benefits of subscription-based marketing to build–and sustain–success.

John is the founder of The Value Builder System, a cloud-based assessment tool business owners use to assess the “sellability” of their company. The Value Builder System is licensed to a network of 1,700 accountants and other advisors around the world who use it as a succession planning “conversation starter” with their clients. Prior to starting The Value Builder System, John started and exited four companies, including a quantitative market research business that was acquired by The Corporate Executive Board (NYSE: CEB) in 2008.

Warrillow is also the host of Built to Sell Radio, ranked by Forbes Magazine as one of the world’s 10 best podcasts for business owners, and the author of Drilling for Gold: How Corporations Can Successfully Market to Small Businesses.

Built to Sell: 8 Things That Drive The Value Of Your Company

If you’re like a lot of entrepreneurs, you use your Profit & Loss statement as your report card at the end of the year. You may even use your P&L to figure out what your company is worth by applying a multiple to your profit. But, having worked with more than 17,000 entrepreneurs, John Warrillow has seen examples of companies that fetch up to three times more than the average price for companies in their industry. Likewise, he’s seen cases where companies are worth less than half the average multiple of their peer group.

Why would one company be worth two or three times more than a similar company in the same industry?

John has discovered that there are eight factors that actually impact your company’s value more than the industry you’re in.

During this informative and engaging talk, you’ll learn how to:

*Increase your score on each of the eight drivers of company value

*Maximize your company’s overall value

*Find strategic buyers for your business

*Structure your business to maximize its value

*Accelerate the pace of positive word-of-mouth for your business using the same technique as companies like Eventbrite, Intuit, Google and Apple

*Boost your company’s cash flow in the same way Harley Davidson finances its business

*Differentiate your business using the same methodology Warren Buffet looks for in the companies he invests in

*Minimize your company’s reliance on your personal involvement using some of the strategies Tim Ferriss used to reduce the time he spent in this business to just four hours a week.

The Formula: 5 Surprising Ways To Boost The Value Of A Business

What if there was a predictable formula for helping you improve the value of your business?

Not an opinion. Not some hair-brained scheme.

An actual recipe, based on an analysis of more than 25,000 businesses, that you can follow to drive up the value of your business.

Would you be interested in that formula?

John Warrillow shares his five-step approach to improving the value of any company regardless of its size or industry.

Based on data from more than 25,000 companies, you’ll discover:

  • The benchmarks for valuing your business in today’s market
  • Warren Buffett’s surprising criteria for investing and how it can help you make big decisions
  • The one data point acquirers use to predict the future of your business
  • The truth about what acquirers look for in a company to buy (hint: bigger is not always better)
  • Three factors that can destroy the value of your company
  • How to position your business to be irresistible to a strategic acquirer

Whether you want to sell your business next year or just want to be confident you’re building a value asset you could sell one day, you will want to hear this talk.

The Automatic Customer: Creating A Subscription Business In Any Industry

In January 2013, Avis Budget Group announced they had acquired ZipCar and its 760,000 subscribers for $491 million.

Three months later, Morningstar estimated that Amazon Prime had garnered 10 million subscribers, making it Amazon’s latest billion-dollar business.

Nine months after the Prime announcement, subscription-based messaging service WhatsApp, after gaining 450 million users in five years, was acquired by Facebook for $19 billion dollars in the largest ever acquisition of an Internet company.

What do ZipCar, Amazon and WhatsApp all have in common? They are the pioneers of the new subscription economy. John Warrillow, the author of The Automatic Customer: Creating a Subscription Business in Any Industry, will give you blueprint for building a subscription business. You’ll learn:

  • The five trends driving the subscription economy;
  • How one company turned a $29-dollar average sale into a $7,540 sale and dropped its spoilage rates from 30% to 3%;
  • Why the average Amazon Prime customer spends $709 per year more than the average Amazon customer;
  • The 9 different subscription models and how to apply each to your business;
  • How TIGER 21, the world’s most exclusive investment club for investors with $10 million or more in liquid assets, turned to the subscription model to build their network;
  • How Dollar Shave Club and BirchBox make money;
  • How to capitalize on the Trojan Horse subscription model;
  • The secret psychology of selling a subscription;
  • How to value a subscription business, and the most important ratio you need to understand and optimize in order to attract venture capital investment;
  • 8 reasons why customers quit subscribing and how to make customers sticky for life.

Whether you want to transform your entire business model into a recurring revenue engine or just pick up an extra 5% of automatic sales, you won’t want to miss John’s session.


How To Attract The High Net Worth Investor

Do you have enough High Net Worth (HNW) clients on your book?

Attracting HNW clients is a challenge for most financial advisors. HNW investors typically have established relationships with their existing adviser, and the hassle to switch often means affluent clients stay put, even in the face of relatively poor service or performance.

Ambitious financial advisors can feel handcuffed, resigning themselves to waiting decades in hopes that a few of their existing clients blossom into the HNW category.

The alternative approach is to target business owners today. During How To Attract The High Net Worth Investor, John Warrillow will reveal:

  • The three psychographic profiles of the business owner market and how to build a trusting relationship with each segment
  • How to avoid the biggest mistake financial advisors make it targeting HNW investors
  • How financial advisors can capitalize on the natural biorhythms of any business owner
  • How to guarantee that Centers of Influence refer HNW investors to you
  • The secret to converting HNW investors into clients

An Accounting Firm That Is Built to Sell

You started your accounting practice in order to have the freedom to do your own thing – to control your time and your earnings.

But for many accountants, the dream has faded, replaced by the day-to-day reality of running an accounting firm: clients demanding your individual attention, trading time for money, chasing receivables, arguing with the IRS, and worrying about disappointing clients.

It’s time to get back to the reasons you started your practice and create An Accounting Firm That Is Built to Sell.  During this 55-minute presentation, John Warrillow, five-time entrepreneur and the author of the bestselling book Built to Sell: Creating a Business That Can Thrive Without You, will show you how to:

  • Structure your practice (using The Scalability Trifecta) so it runs without your personal involvement;
  • Scale up your practice so it can grow without you having to do any selling;
  • Value your firm in the same way that an acquirer will;
  • Drive up the value of your practice so you can achieve a premium multiple over the industry standard of one times gross recurring fees;
  • Accurately predict the performance of your company in the future so you can sleep well at night knowing that your clients will stay and will refer you to others;
  • Benchmark your practice against other CPA firms in the United States and the best-of-the-best businesses anywhere in the world.

**See video clip “How to Create a Sellable Business”**

The Freedom Workshop

Target Audience: Business Owners
Duration: ½ day to Full Day

You started your business for the freedom that comes with running your own company: the freedom to earn what you deserve and to work for whoever you want, when you want, and from wherever you want.

The challenge is that for many business owners the dream remains elusive. In fact, you may feel trapped in your business because:

  • you know more than anyone else in your company about your industry;
  • your customers ask to deal with you personally;
  • you are involved in the building or creating of what you sell;
  • and you are your company’s best sales person.

The Freedom Workshop is an interactive, sleeves-rolled-up session, dedicated to getting you back on track to gaining the freedom you deserve as a business owner. You’ll learn:

  • How to recognize when you’ve fallen into The Owner’s Trap and the steps to take to pull yourself out;
  • The three attributes of a scalable business model;
  • The eight factors that drive the value of your business;
  • The valuation technique used by professional business buyers;
  • How The Switzerland Structure bulletproofs your business from demanding employees, overbearing customers, and suppliers who hold you hostage;
  • One simple technique for eliminating cash flow worries;
  • The one kind of revenue that can triple the value of your business;
  • The six forms of Recurring Revenue;
  • The two essential elements of your marketing plan you need in order to avoid commoditization and costly price wars;
  • The one question you need to ask your customers to predict the likelihood that they will buy again in the future and refer you to others.
  • How to benchmark your business operations against the world’s greatest companies like, Apple, and Google.

Give John one day of your time, and he’ll give you your life back.


Speakers' Spotlight represents a wide variety of motivational speakers who present energetic talks that will inspire you and your staff to take action, be it in your personal lives, your workplace, or both. Read More

Conference Speakers

The Impact of a Speech Can Last Forever

Speakers' Spotlight represents a talented roster of some of the world's most extraordinary conference speakers. Our conference speakers' experience is as broad as it is deep, and they are all leaders in their fields, which include business, politics, sports, the media, academia, science, technology, culture and entertainment. Our conference speakers are thought-provoking and action-oriented and leave their audiences, whether speaking to a group of 10, 100, 1000 or more, enlightened and inspired.

Speakers' Spotlight's conference speakers frequently go the extra mile to be in touch with meeting planners - or even CEOs and presidents of companies and organizations themselves - in advance of their talks in order to tailor the message and hit on key points specific to the client's needs. Our conference speakers arrive on time, and will have conferred with you in advance to ensure they have everything they need in order to deliver an impactful speech. Our conference speakers frequently use well designed visuals, such as photos, slide shows, or video clips to bring other elements of interest into their talks, and our conference speakers frequently build-in time during their talks to allow for an audience Q&A, ensuring your staff has a chance to ask questions of the particular conference speaker they have just heard.

Some of our conference speakers in high demand include David Chilton, Bruce Croxon, General Rick Hillier, Clara Hughes, Ron James, Amanda Lang, Stephen Lewis, Patricia Lovett-Reid, Mark Kielburger, Kevin O'Leary, Jeff Rubin, and Margaret Trudeau.

Speakers' Spotlight is committed to serving the diverse needs of the corporations, organizations, companies, non-profit and government groups that contact us when seeking conference speakers, and we work hard to find the conference speakers that will best meet and exceed your needs. Whatever you require are when it comes to conference speakers, Speakers' Spotlight will work had to ensure that you get the conference speakers that are right for you.

Keynote Speakers

Speakers' Spotlight: The Key Ingredient To Finding Your Perfect Speakers

Speakers' Spotlight represents a vast roster of some of the world's most extraordinary keynote speakers in fields such as business, politics, sports, the media, academia, science, technology, culture and entertainment. Our keynote speakers run the gauntlet from spoken word poet Sarah Kay, to business guru Simon Sinek; from young athlete Olympic athlete Adam van Koeverden to the wrongly incarcerated former boxer Ruben Carter; from Margaret Trudeau to her son Justin Trudeau. Whatever your needs are for your keynote speakers, Speakers' Spotlight the keynote speakers that will fill them.

Our keynote speakers can adjust their talks to suit your needs, whether you're looking for an address by keynote speakers of 15, 30, or 45 minutes or more, our keynote speakers will confer with you before your engagement to ensure that their talks meet your needs. Our keynote speakers frequently adjust their speeches to include important talking points your organization or company needs emphasized, and will also often adjust content so it is individually tailored to your audience. For instance, if your audience is primarily those in the auto industry, our keynote speakers will draw on anecdotes from that industry in order to ensure their speech is relatable. Our keynote speakers are usually available in the days and weeks prior to your event to discuss your needs and go over any details (such as audio visual requirements) that arise.

Speakers' Spotlight is committed to meeting the different needs of the corporations, organizations, companies, non-profit and government groups that contact us when seeking keynote speakers, and we work hard to find the keynote speakers that will provide the best match for your event. Whatever you require are when it comes to keynote speakers, Speakers' Spotlight will work had to ensure that you get the keynote speakers that are right for you.

Motivational Speakers

Motivating the world

Speakers' Spotlight represents a wide variety of motivational speakers who present energetic talks that will inspire leaders and employees to take action, be it in their personal lives, their workplace, or both. Speakers' Spotlight's motivational speakers address everything from encouraging audiences to adapt healthy lifestyles to unifying groups to achieve professional goals. Our motivational speakers work with an astonishing range of companies in sectors such as science, technology, finance, advertising, and manufacturing, as well as professional organizations, cultural institutions, and non-profit entities and government, throughout North American and around the world.

Motivational speakers that work with Speakers' Spotlight frequently go the extra mile to be in touch with meeting planners - or even CEOs and presidents of companies and organizations themselves - in advance of their talks in order to tailor the message and hit on key points specific to the client's needs. Our motivational speakers arrive on time, work with the client in advance to ensure the proper set up of their audio/visual needs so that everything will go smoothly when they hit the stage, and often include Q&A sessions in their talks so that your staff can ask any questions of our motivational speakers that they may wish.

Using Speakers' Spotlight to book your motivational speakers obviously offers many advantages. You reap the benefits of our experience and expertise, as we can help you select the best motivational speakers for your motivational speakers' engagement.

Our motivational speakers include prominent motivational speakers - and many of them household names -- such as Roberta Bondar, Michael "Pinball" Clemons, Terry Evanshen, Scott Harrison, John Izzo, Simon Jackson, Craig Kielburger, Dr. Samantha Nutt, Simon Sinek, Severn Cullis-Suzuki and Brett Wilson.

Whatever your needs are when it comes to motivational speakers, Speakers' Spotlight has the motivational speakers that will both meet -- and exceed -- your expectations.

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