Welcome to the March 2008 issue of THINKstrategies' Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Showplace® Update!
If my travels, conversations with CIOs, SaaS CEOs and various industry announcements are any indication, my December forecast that on-demand services will soar in 2008 has already become a reality.
THINKstrategies' research and consulting work first identified broad-based interest and adoption of SaaS in 2005, and now the other major research and consulting firms are confirming these trends in their latest surveys. But, research isn't enough to answer the questions that IT/business decision-makers, start-ups and established players are asking about the SaaS market.
It takes extensive hands-on experience and the right perspective to understand the nuances of this market. That is why THINKstrategies has become a 'trusted advisor' to a growing number of enterprises, IT solution providers and investors seeking to capitalize on the SaaS movement.
THINKstrategies' SaaS Showplace. continues to be the largest vendor-independent directory of SaaS solutions and insight with over 600 companies and over 2500 SaaS solutions listed in 80 Application, Industry and Enabling Technology categories!
The value of the SaaS Showplace and THINKstrategies' perspective on the market is reflected in the growth of our newsletter readership. We added another 300 subscribers in the past month, and this newsletter is now distributed to over 8500 readers worldwide!
This Update includes insights from our latest consulting engagements, research, sponsors and partners. You can find more in the Showplace Best Practices Portal, on the SaaS Insights page of the Showplace and on our blog, THINK IT Services.
Contact me if you have further questions about the SaaS market, or you'd like to learn more about how you can become a SaaS Showplace, sponsor or take advantage of THINKstrategies' consulting services to achieve your business objectives.
Jeff Kaplan, Managing Director
CIOs Talking SaaS, Leveraging On-Demand Solutions
One of the reasons THINKstrategies is convinced that the SaaS market is poised to experience exponential growth in 2008 is growing acceptance and adoption of SaaS solutions by CIOs and their IT departments.
In the past, IT departments represented the biggest obstacle to SaaS adoption, and CIOs were apprehensive about potential security and reliable issues with SaaS.
Today, a quarter of the IT professionals surveyed by THINKstrategies' and Cutter Consortium last October/November are using or considering SaaS solutions to help them better manage their operations.
I've also interviewed the CIOs of Aviall Services (a subsidiary of Boeing), Chiquita Brands International, Colorado Capital Bank, Heidelberg, the Schumacher Group, and Shaklee Corporation who have become proponents of SaaS and will be the keynote speakers at SaaScon.
(You can hear my podcast series with these CIOs by clicking on their names in the box entitled, "GET A PREVIEW" on the SaaScon homepage.)
Two new sponsors of the Showplace, Symantec and Verio, are offering solutions to meet the needs of IT departments.
THINKstrategies believes CIO/ IT department adoption of SaaS will accelerate the growth of the SaaS market. Contact us if you would like to discuss these trends.
SaaS Market Shifts From Point Products to Platform Solutions
THINKstrategies' latest survey in conjunction with Cutter Consortium also found growing interest among IT/business decision-makers in SaaS platforms rather than standalone point solutions.
THINKstrategies' investment banking partner, TripleTree LCC, has published a new research report examining the rapidly changing SaaS platform market and competitive landscape.
Progress Software has quietly become an important platform player with over 200 ISVs offering over 500 SaaS solutions built on its development and management tools. Read THINKstrategies' latest Strategic Thinking Profile about Progress Software's SaaS Empowerment platform.
Contact us if you'd like to learn more about the business implications of these platform trends, or if you know a company in the SaaS industry that you think should be profiled by THINKstrategies.
Managing SaaS Transactions
As demand for SaaS solutions rises, SaaS providers are learning that managing the transaction process isn't as simple as it appears.
One of the primary attractions of SaaS is its pay-as-you-go subscription pricing model. While most SaaS providers promote this business benefit, they are unable to actually offer their solutions in an on-demand model because of the complicated provisioning and billing processes that it entails.
THINKstrategies recently published a whitepaper, sponsored by Aria Systems, which examines the challenges of transaction management in the on-demand market, and the lessons which can be learned from the gaming and telecommunications industries.
Click here to download this whitepaper.
You can find more whitepapers regarding SaaS industry trends and steps to success in the SaaS Showplace Best Practices Portal or on the SaaS Insights page.
Benchmarking the SaaS Business
THINKstrategies is pleased to be supporting a new SaaS benchmark study being conducted by OPEXEngine.
OPEXEngine is an independent consulting firm which provides comprehensive operating benchmarks that enable high techology and software executives to manage their businesses more efficiently, enhance their growth and improve their profitability.
THINKstrategies is supporting OPEXEngine's latest benchmarking survey aimed at B2B software companies with 2007 revenues between $10M-$250 million offering SaaS solutions.
Participants in this study will receive a confidential Company Performance Report and a detailed Industry Report that will cover key financial performance metrics.
We are pleased to welcome three new sponsors to the SaaS Showplace:
Aria Systems, a leading provider of billing and customer management solutions for on-demand services. Click here to read about their unique approach to transaction management in an on-demand environment.
Symantec, which is offering its Symantec Online Backup solution to small and medium sized businesses (SMBs). The Online Backup service includes browser-based, secure, on-demand backup and restoration that allows users to browse their data files, select data to be protected, and specify backup settings. Showplace newsletter subscribers can sign up before April 30, 2008 and get the first 3 months free.
Verio Business Solutions, a portfolio of market- leading software that optimizes your communications, customer service, security, data integrity, and productivity -- without having to invest the time and resources typical of business software installations. Showplace subscribers can get a 60-Day, No-Risk Trial. Click here to learn more.
In addition, you can also find the following sponsored whitepapers on the SaaS Showplace,
"Completing Your SaaS Ecosystem with SaaS-Delivered Monitoring and Management Services" sponsored by Absolute Performance.
"Automating and Optimizing Service Desk Performance", sponsored by Kaseya.
"Calculating the ROI for Business Intelligence in SMBs," sponsored by Oco.
"The Evolution of Resource Management", sponsored by QuickArrow.
The SaaS Showplace is made possible by the support of corporate sponsors. In turn, Showplace sponsors gain greater visibility on the Showplace and additional recognition in this newsletter which is distributed to over 8500 IT/business decision-makers, IT solution providers, investors and business/trade press reporters.
Sponsorship opportunities are packaged and priced to make it simple for SaaS providers and enabling technology vendors to select the right option to meet their marketing and sales objectives within their budgetary requirements.
Contact us if you'd like to learn more about SaaS Showplace sponsorships.
Upcoming SaaS Events
Here are the SaaS events you should have on your calendar,
SaaScon, March 25-26, 2008, San Jose, CA (THINKstrategies/SaaS Showplace referrals using this link will save 20% on their registration fee.)
SaaS Economics Summit, April 3-5, San Francisco, CA (To save $100 on the registration fee, use code: THINK)
Software 2008, April 29-30, Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas.
In between these important conferences, I will be presenting THINKstrategie s' perspectives on the SaaS market at a number of corporate events.
Click here if you'd like to learn how you can include THINKstrategies' perspective and gain the promotional support of the SaaS Showplace for your upcoming event.
About THINKstrategies & the SaaS Showplace
THINKstrategies is the only strategic consulting firm that focuses on the business implications of the on-demand services movement on enterprises, IT solutions providers and investors. THINKstrategies helps enterprise decision-makers with their sourcing strategies, IT solution providers with their marketing strategies, and venture firms with their investment strategies in the IT services sector.
The SaaS Showplace has been established by THINKstrategies to give IT and business decision-makers a simple, easy-to-use directory of SaaS providers and enabling technology vendors, and provide an independent clearinghouse of information and insights to help organizations of all sizes identify the right SaaS providers to address their needs.
The Showplace is also intended to help SaaS providers and enabling technology vendors increase their access to IT/business decision-makers and increase their visibility in the market.
In addition to the SaaS Showplace, THINKstrategies has also created the Managed Services Showplace which lists leading managed service providers (MSPs) by Service, Industry and Enabling Technology areas. It also provides the latest news and insights about the managed services market.