Category: Business Objects


Straddling the Hybrid On-Premise and On-Demand Worlds

17th March

With the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) event season in full throttle, I’ve found myself consulting with a new generation of aspiring SaaS players who are trying to learn about the fundamentals of this rapidly evolving marketplace quickly so they can respond to changing customer requirements and capitalize on new market opportunities.

Starting with SoftLetter’s SaaS Sales and Marketing Seminar in Atlanta which has been upgraded to the SaaS University for Waltham, MA in June, and continuing with OpSource’s SaaS Summit last month in San Francisco, a widening array of incumbent software vendors (ISVs) and old-line technology vendors have approached me seeking help in their efforts to join the SaaS movement.

Some of these companies have lived well for years in niche markets, others have enjoyed cashcow businesses at a mass market level with hardware-based solutions. Now they see a combination of market forces fundamentally … Read More »


Legacy Software Contraction and the Tugboat Strategy

14th October

The consolidation of the legacy software market continued this past week with SAP’s announced plans to acquire Business Objects, followed by Oracle’s announcement that it intends to buy BEA Systems.

These transactions clearly indicate that the traditional, on-premise software market is undergoing fundamental changes. The most obvious driver of the latest announcements is the growing importance of business intelligence (BI) and analytics as a key ingredient in any meaningful enterprise application.

In an ideal world, these acquisitions would mean that customers no longer have to carry the burden of integrating these capabilities into their enterprise software environments. Instead, it would be logical to expect the business intelligence and analytics capabilities to become a ‘plug and play’ component of the SAP and Oracle’s software portfolios. However, it is more likely that these acquisitions will simply make their software solutions even more complex to … Read More »


More Companies Capitalizing on Channel Opportunities in the SaaS Market

21st August

A little over a year ago, I contributed a commentary to eWeek’s Channel Insider, entitled “On-Demand a Boon for the Channel”, that stated the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) movement doesn’t have to be the death-kneel for channel organizations.

At that time, many resellers and integrators feared that SaaS would ‘dis-intermediate’ them because of its direct sales and simpler deployment characteristics. There is no question that these attributes will certainly disrupt the traditional business models of many resellers and integrators who capitalized on the complexities of the legacy applications in the past. However, there is still plenty of complexity in today’s enterprise-oriented SaaS solutions to give innovative resellers and integrators a new round of business opportunities to pursue.

Just as in the past, customization and integration remain challenges in the new world of enterprise SaaS solutions. A year ago, I discussed in the eWeek article … Read More »


Bridging the Gap Between the On-Demand and On-Premise Software Worlds

24th July

Callidus Software Inc. announced todaythat it has been certified to offer its TrueComp® Suite on Salesforce.com’s AppExchange.This announcement isn’t likely to generate bold headlines in the business or industry trade press. But, I believe it is a significant bellweather for the software industry and good news for organizations who have been worried that they’d have to make an either/or decision when selecting on-demand versus on-premise software solutions.

Until recently, the rapid rise of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) as a radical movement to displace legacy applications. As a consequence, SaaS was seen as a fundamental threat to the long-term viability of the independent, or as I prefer to say, “incumbent” software vendors (ISVs).

While on-demand, SaaS solutions represent a real challenge for legacy software vendors, it is no longer a simple battle of good (on-demand) versus evil (on-premise). Instead, both parties are recognizing that they … Read More »


Latest SaaS Entrants and Exits Fuelling Faster Growth

10th July

Last week, NetSuite announced that it was finally ready to enter the public market with an Initial Public Offering (IPO), and this week two other Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) oriented players found a private exit via acquisitions.

The NetSuite acquisition had been highly anticipated and is another indication of the growing support of the SaaS model within the investment community. NetSuite’s S-1 shows that the company is experiencing strong growth while also reducing the proportion of its revenues being spent on software development, sales and marketing. Although NetSuite isn’t a rocket-ship like Salesforce.com, it has established a broad enough customer base and is gaining sufficient momentum to disprove any lingering misconceptions that SaaS can’t satisfy businesses’ back-office or financial management needs.

A successful IPO by NetSuite, combined with growing receptivity to IPOs in general within the investment community, will widen the door for other … Read More »


Changing Business Intelligence Landscape

6th March

While much of the information technology (IT) industry and many CIOs, concerned about their traditional legacy business intelligence (BI) applications, were focused on the market implications of Oracle’s acquisition of Hyperion Software, new entries into the market may represent a more important milestone in the evolution of this segment of the software industry.

On March 6, 2007, LucidERA unveiled its new Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) business intelligence solution. The company is founded by one of the truly good guys of the industry, Ken Rudin, who also has a unique perspective on the opportunities and challenges represented by the SaaS model.

Ken started his career at Oracle. He then co-founded and was CEO of Emergent Corporation, a consulting firm focused on data warehousing projects for Fortune 500 companies which was sold to Keane, Inc. in 1999. At that point, Ken joined a new company, called … Read More »





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