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Analyzing SaaS Revenue Forecasts and Market Growth by Segment

A recent report published by Standard & Poor’s Equity Research Services on the computer software industry makes for interesting reading.

Zaineb Bokhari, Application Software Analyst authored the 47-page report.  He has shown how the software industry is going through a fundamental restructuring due to the impact of SaaS, open source, and the many variations in licensing programs.

His analysis also shows how these factors taken together form a powerful catalyst of long-term disruption to business models.  At one point, the study predicts the end of perpetual licensing due to the time-to-value contributions of SaaS-based applications.  The report is available for download to Equity Research Services clients, including many college and university online libraries that have Standard & Poor’s subscriptions.

Here are the key take-aways from reading this report:

  • IDC expects the market for global packaged software to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.8% from 2009 to 2014. Over the same period, IDC projects software-as-a-service will grow at a 25.3% CAGR.

  • Standard & Poor’s reports that the SaaS category is still dwarfed by traditional packaged software, which IDC sized at $272 billion in 2009 (versus $13.1 billion for SaaS).
  • According to IDC’s forecasts, the size of the SaaS will rise from just under 5% of the size of the packaged software market in 2009 to more than 11% by 2014.
  • Standard & Poor’s expects corporate spending on enterprise software and related maintenance to grow in the low to mid-single-digit range (i.e., 3%–6%) in 2010, with some segments expanding at above-average levels.
  • Overall revenues from SaaS delivery models reached $13.1 billion in 2009, a growth rate of 34.2% from 2008 according to IDC. IDC expects this revenue to rise to $40.5 billion by 2014, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25.3%. This is dwarfed by the $272 billion that IDC believes was spent globally on software in 2009.
  • Application development and deployment is projected to have the most rapid growth of all segments, attaining a 39.2% CAGR from 2009 – 2014. Please see the table below, Worldwide Software-as-a-Service Revenues Forecast by Segment for a year-by-year breakout of this category.
  • Infrastructure software is forecasted to grow at a 27.4% CAGR through 2014, totaling 11,345 instances by 2014 according to IDC.  The year-by-year breakouts are also included in the following table.
  • Applications are expected to have 20.4% CAGR through 2014 based in units and attain a 50.8% market share of all SaaS segments by 2014.

Bottom line: Enterprise software pricing models must change to stay in step with customers’ expectations of more value for their maintenance and licensing fees. The evolving economics of cloud and SaaS-based application deployment are in the process of permanently re-ordering enterprise software.

Flickr attribution: http://www.flickr.com/photos/8011986@N02/2964298027/in/photostream/#/

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