From its inception, GreenSky Credit has been a tech company that isn’t afraid to flout Silicon Valley culture. It’s founder, David Zalik, has been a successful entrepreneur in the private sector since he was 14 years old. His grounded approach to business and technological innovation has given rise to a very different kind of technology company where the pomp and pretense of self-important Silicon Valley man-children, who often have never worked a real job in their lives, have been eschewed for straight shooting and doing what’s known to work.
And it has been this no-nonsense approach of Zalik that has led his company to its current success. Started in 2006, when Zalik went all-in with his entire net worth on the future success of his new enterprise, GreenSky Credit has today grown into a company worth an estimated $4 billion. It is a market leader in the fintech industry and now has a proven and mature business model. With more than 650 full-time employees, it also ranks among the largest fintech employers in the country.
The pop wisdom of the tech world says that you never bring a technology company public until you absolutely have to. GreenSky Credit has massive cash reserves and is so profitable that it hardly needs to use any financing at all. The company is a very long way from needing to go public. However, Zalik has stated that he is considering a IPO for his company. The fact is that GreenSky Credit’s business model is proven and mature enough that the entire company is something close to a turnkey operation. Zalik believes that GreenSky is a sufficiently good business that all of the notorious problems of taking the firm public, at this point, will have no undue negative consequences.
This is all the result of having done things conservatively from the start. Zalik was careful to always build adequate cash reserves and to only expand organically. The result is a company that is positioned to handle not just downturns but also any market opportunities that may arise. Although Zalik has not pursued acquisitions to date, he says that doing so is on the table. And GreenSky is now positioned to become a dominant player in U.S. retail lending.