SEMrush logo

SEMrush is an online visibility management and content marketing SaaS platform.  Essentially they provide SEO management tools for all types of customers.  They went public in March 2021.  On a trailing twelve-month basis, they generated over $160 million in revenue. I never knew SEO tools could generate that much revenue.

SEMRush History

SEMrush was founded in 2008 by Oleg Shchegolev and Dmitry Melnikov,  SEMrush specialized in keyword research and SEO optimization.  They were self-funded and built up a portfolio of over 45 tools.  In March 2018 they raised $37 million in venture funding.  They filed their draft registration statement with the SEC in November 2020 and completed their IPO in March 2021.

SEMrush Financial Summary

On August 10th SEMrush filed their 10-Q with the SEC for the second quarter of 2021.  If you need to brush up on your Income Statement basics check out Why Should Product Managers Care About Income Statements? Here are some relevant extracts from the 10-Q

Income Statement

SEMrush Income Statement
SEMrush 10-Q

SEMrush grew top-line revenues by over 50%.  They also increased their gross margin by over 2% to 77.6%.  They grew their net income from a loss of over $4 million to a profit of $1.1 million.

SEMrush is a global business with more than half of its revenues coming from out of the United States.

SMrush geographic revenue distribution
SEMrush 10-Q

Balance Sheet

SEMrush 10-Q

SEMrush’s balance sheet is in great shape.  The $145 million in cash is due to the IPO.  The rest of the balance sheet is clean. While total revenues grew by over 50%, deferred revenues only grew by 30%.  Intangible assets are reasonable.  There are n significant liabilities.  If you need to brush up on your Balance Sheet basics check out Why Should Product Managers Care About Balance Sheets?

Cash Flow Statement

SEMrush cash flow statement
SEMrush 10-Q

SEMrush’s cash flow statement is in good shape as well.  They increased their net cash provided by operations by over 900%.  If you need to brush up on your Cash Flow Statement basics check out Why Product Managers Should Care About Cash Flow Statements

SEMrush Valuation

SEMrush’s has an Enterprise Value of $2.6 billion.  Its Enterprise Value/Revenue multiple is 16.68x.  It has a higher valuation in comparison to other SaaS companies.  Consider the Software Equity Group’s most recent report on SaaS valuations:

SEG Q2 2021 SaaS valuations
Software Equity Group

SEMrush would be in the Sales/Marketing category which had a median EV/Revenue ratio of 12.3x


I have been a user of SEMrush’s free services for a few years.  I haven’t used it a lot, but have found it to be helpful.  I was surprised to learn that they had gone public and were on track to generate over $159 million in revenue in 2021.  When I drilled into their financial statements I found a solid company with fast-growing revenues, a clean balance sheet, and a healthy cash flow statement.  I can understand why they have a premium valuation to other sales/marketing SaaS companies. (Full disclosure: I do not own any SEMrush stock).

Also published on Medium.

By John Mecke

John is a 25 year veteran of the enterprise technology market. He has led six global product management organizations for three public companies and three private equity-backed firms. He played a key role in delivering a $115 million dividend for his private equity backers – a 2.8x return in less than three years. He has led five acquisitions for a total consideration of over $175 million. He has led eight divestitures for a total consideration of $24.5 million in cash. John regularly blogs about product management and mergers/acquisitions.