SaaS in 2013: Companies and trends to watch

Salesforce.com, Oracle, SAP and a range of startups are going to make plenty of news in SaaS

By , IDG News Service |  Software

Workday: This SaaS financials and HCM vendor has received a great deal of attention thanks to high-profile customer wins as well as a recent successful IPO, but the spotlight also comes with continued pressure to perform. Market watchers will be eyeing Workday's stock price, revenue and ability to keep landing those mega-deals against Oracle and SAP.

Intuit: Millions of small businesses use Intuit's QuickBooks software, and as more customers move to SaaS, Intuit clearly wants to keep them. In September, it rolled out a global version of QuickBooks Online covering well over 100 countries. It has also moved to build out a small business SaaS suite of sorts, tying together its Demandforce cloud-based marketing software with both QuickBooks Online and the on-premise versions of QuickBooks. It seems likely that Intuit will continue down this path in 2013.

Zuora: This vendor offers SaaS software for subscription-based businesses, providing billing, e-commerce and finance modules that tackle the unique needs of such companies. The company has been getting plenty of attention and could be headed for an IPO. It may also see itself courted by potential acquirers, as well as challenged by new rivals.

Single sign-on for SaaS: Vendors such as Okta, Ping Identity and OneLogin offer their own takes on single-sign in for multiple SaaS applications at once. Look for growth in this area as more customers reorient their IT environments around SaaS and jettison legacy applications, but then find they have a fresh management problem on their hands. One can also imagine these tools sparking a rise in consulting firms offering to stitch together and perhaps manage a best-of-breed SaaS suite for customers.

Cloud ERP for manufacturers: It's well-known that ERP has lagged other categories with respect to SaaS. However, the market may grow substantially in 2013 due to the rise of SaaS vendors honing in on specific verticals such as manufacturing. That's where companies such as NetSuite, Plex Systems and Kenandy have focused attention.

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris' email address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com

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