I think you can relax.
I think there are many start-ups that would ‘flip cart wheels’ if they could have the same challenges (opportunities) Rachio has in the same amount of time Rachio’s been in business.
In 4 years (in order as I think of them), Rachio has:
The product that is highest rated amongst sprinkler controllers, regardless of what professional publication is saying so.
Approximately 50 employees to worry about the ‘care and feeding’ of (no small task for a small business starting from scratch just 4 years ago.)
A workforce that’s one quarter engineering degreed.
Already passed by the need to be on Shark Tank for investment to expand - Amazon’s on board as an investor.
Avoided capital expenditures (money) for machines and equipment and processes. (Instead Rachio outsources it’s manufacturing process to a contract manufacturer.)
Probably ‘burned through’ cash like there’s ‘no tomorrow’ to keep up with demand, noting its employee workforce size and cost of its local manufacturing process (i.e non-China).
My guess is, overall, Rachio leadership is making it ‘crystal clear’ its highest mission at the moment is to hang on, step forward, ‘take no prisoners,’ and just ‘kill it’ for this current market sales opportunity for Iro2 - focused on not missing one possible sale. At the moment all published authority is saying the Iro2 is ‘top of the heap’ for smart controllers - thus take advantage of this now.
My further guess is, leadership’s focus is to generate cash. Cash is needed for the V3/G3 strategic efforts, to ‘buy time’ with investors who I’m confident have challenging financial objectives expected to be achieved, and to have healthy strategic efforts beyond just next product V3/G3.
There’s a lot of smart people needed to pull off a V3/G3 strategy that will again earn Rachio opportunity to execute through a sales opportunity like what’s its currently got in its lap. Thus, my continued guess is, there’s maniacal focus on maximizing efficiencies (manufacturing costs, operating costs, etc.)
Yep, I’m the one who started ‘the contest’ (see V3 thread), initially joining most in thinking that V3 availability would occur reasonably after announcement. While it hasn’t occurred, and coming up on a year later, still, I haven’t seen anything that changes my ‘glass is half full’ view. I think, with careful reflection:
Rachio is carefully generating a sales cycle of proportion that not many start-ups get the opportunity to tackle;
Success is clearly understood to be executing on the current Iro2 sales and generating cash; and
Rachio’s leaders are carefully managing and adjusting what it puts out for next offering V3/G3 product.
I think these guys are up to the challenge.