Following last month’s announcement that Powderkeg has officially become a product company, my team and I have been doing some intensive planning on how to build a world-class customer experience (CX). With this in mind, I sought out Haresh Gangwani of Bolstra and Don Aquilano of Allos Ventures for this episode to get the perspective and advice of two experts in the SaaS Customer Success space.

Gangwani and Aquilano have a combined 30 years of customer success experience, Gangwani as a business operator and Aquilano as an advisor and investor. Gangwani previously served in various VP roles at the enterprise software company Aprimo, where he developed such a passion for helping customers get value out of a product that he later launched his own customer success SaaS startup, Bolstra. Meanwhile, Aquilano invested in and sat on the boards of both Aprimo and Bolstra, which helped him form a close working relationship with Gangwani and taught him the incredible value of customer success from a financial and advisory perspective.

Our guests provided some truly invaluable insights on why and how to make outstanding customer success practices a secret weapon for your SaaS business. I know I’ll be heeding their advice as we create our new customer experience strategy for Powderkeg.

Enjoy the show, and please leave us a comment below to let us know if you liked the episode! You can also reach out to Gangwani and Aquilano on LinkedIn (links below) to thank them for sharing some of their wisdom on the podcast.

In this episode with Don Aquilano and Haresh Gangwani, you’ll learn: 

  • How Gangwani conceived of Bolstra’s customer success platform (3:53)
  • What a true mentor/mentee relationship looks like, and why you need one (12:50)
  • The big difference between customer success and customer support (22:53)
  • Bolstra’s process for driving customer success with their SaaS product (28:40)
  • Why charging for customer success actually makes economic sense (33:25)
  • Why you need to commit to customer success early in the life of your business (38:43)

Please enjoy this conversation with Don Aquilano and Haresh Gangwani!




If you like this episode, please subscribe and leave us a review on iTunes. You can also follow us on Soundcloud or Stitcher. We have an incredible lineup of interviews we’ll be releasing every Tuesday here on the Powderkeg Podcast.

Don Aquilano and Haresh Gangwani Quotes from This Episode of Powderkeg:

Links and Resources Mentioned in this Episode:

Companies and Organizations:



Software Artistry

Tivoli Systems




Orr Fellowship




Boston Consulting Group

Burt’s Bees

Seventh Generation

Venture Capital Firms:

Allos Ventures


Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

Purdue University

Indiana University

University of Notre Dame

University of Kentucky

University of Illinois


Don Aquilano (LinkedIn)

Haresh Gangwani (LinkedIn)

Bill Godfrey (LinkedIn)

Rob McLaughlin

Did you enjoy this conversation? Thank Kevin & Robert on Twitter!

If you enjoyed this session and have 3 seconds to spare, let Don Aquilano & Haresh Gangwani know via Twitter by clicking on the links below:

Click here to say hi and thank Don Aquilano on twitter!

Click here to say hi and thank Haresh Gangwani on twitter!


What stood out most to you about what Don Aquilano & Haresh Gangwani shares in this podcast?

For me, it’s why you need to commit to customer success early in the life of your business.

You? Leave a comment below.


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