Located: San Francisco, California
Market: Cloud Business Intelligence
Products: GoodData On-Demand Analytics
Key Customers: Enterasys, Capgemini, and Software AG, Zendesk, Get Satisfaction and Pardot
Blog: GoodData Blog
- GoodData Taps Industry Veteran Cliff Cate to Lead Company’s Global Customer Success Team (http://www.gooddata.com/blog/gooddata-taps-industry-veteran-cliff-cate-to-lead-companys-global-customer)
- January 25, 2012
GoodData Posts Record-Breaking 600% Year-Over-Year Revenue Growth In 2011
- December 26, 2011
Janova, Software Testing Solution Provider, Partners with GoodData to Offer Powerful Analytics Suite
- December 14, 2011
Free Reports Powered by GoodData Illustrate Opportunities to Improve Lead Flow
I asked Roman Stanek, GoodData’s President, CEO and Chairman a few questions about his business and his view of the SaaS market in 2012.
Did you start out as a Software-as-a-Service company?
We restarted the company in 2007 focusing exclusively on Cloud Business Intelligence. Based on my experience, until recently most SaaS BI was based on an older ASP rather than a true multi-tenant model. By 2007, there was a real opportunity to build elastic BI solutions on top of the Cloud especially with the emergence of companies like Amazon who launched EC2. The traditional way of delivering business intelligence was too expensive and not available to everyone who wanted access important business data. Often times a company’s BI solution was slow and expensive because of inconsistent data demands which are common, that creates spikes in usage.
GoodData spent two years thinking through this problem and building out our platform, which is built on top of Amazon’s Web Services infrastructure that provides a scalable way to build our business. Our team beta tested our solution and by late in 2009 we started selling our new products and re-launched our company.
Our collective experience over past last ten years has been in and around the SOA space, which is very closely aligned to the new Cloud Computing world. For me the inspiration for GoodData was when I really began to realize the possibilities and the disruptive properties of the Cloud. We just needed to find a big business problem, which led us to the world of BI.
It was clear that customers who have bought traditional Business Intelligence solutions from IBM/Cognos, SAP/BusinessObjects, SAS and others, faced the classic innovators dilemma when expecting these providers to deliver new, easy-to-use solutions. Then Salesforce.com came along and said you no longer had to buy software, you could rent it, and by having your software in the Cloud it would always be fresh. They really helped to validate our use of the SaaS business model.
Why do your customers buy from GoodData?
With our approach GoodData can now deliver Business Intelligence for the masses through our use of SaaS and the Cloud. Our customers buy from us because we are focused on creating a really positive product experience, which means that our customers can control and personalize their own user interface, dashboards, metrics, and reports.
Our solution was designed to be really easy-to-use because our customers would rather just turn it on and start using it, which makes their ‘out of the box’ adoption very rapid. We provide a nice set of business-oriented BI templates including pipeline management, marketing, customer services and customer lifecycle analytics all at a reasonable price.
GoodData’s focus is to have our customers up and running quickly. Today we concentrating on “Success in a Month” but over time we want to be continually improving so in the future we will be able to say to our customers GoodData will provide “Success in a Week”.
The most difficult part of building a fully functional BI solution is the intelligence part. GoodData understands that any BI deployment requires creating the model, loading data, integration, then producing metrics, reports and dashboards, we just want to make it really fast and easy.
For Trinet, one of our early customers, our solution is so easy they were able to get started with only one hour of training and most users actually have had no training at all. User adoption at TriNet has been fast because our solution is intuitive. GoodData believes that the analyst in the cube type of BI solution is a broken model because they rely on IT to get their SQL queries and it takes a lot of expertise to use that type of product. We believe that IT should be out of the report writing business and more focused on getting data into systems.
The use of marketing metrics typically get heard but not seen but with collaboration this type of campaign information can be shared in reports, dashboards and KPI’s. When you visit call centers, for example, they have all their metrics on the wall about sales regions, agents and then make decisions about this static information. With our model, we want employees to register and use our solution and we don’t charge for extra users. This model encourages adoption. We charge by the project and use a ‘land and expand’ sales approach. We evaluate our business not on the number of users we are charging for but more on the ‘data under management’ approach, which we think is a better way to approach BI.
With our target market, firms with over $100M in revenues, it’s not about the software or tools, it is about getting the information to front office workers quickly, so they can make better decisions.
What do you see as the key trend emerging in the SaaS industry?
Over the past two years we have been very vocal about Cloud Computing and how it is becoming a credible infrastructure. We hope that there will be less focus on the differences between Public and Private Clouds because this is not really relevant to GoodData. We think the discussion in the future will be mostly focused on costs and pricing of the Cloud.
We have a partnership with Amazon AWS, which delivers a complex, sophisticated Cloud platform. What is great about working with them is that they introduce new services every month that we can leverage without additional investments in R&D. The industry is going to be a lot more price competitive going forward, just like Moore’s Law was for microprocessors, innovation in the Cloud continue to drive down costs. This Cloud innovation cycle will be a key factor in our ability to lowering our prices while improving our BI services.
Another trend is metrics- driven businesses. This has been driven by the web, which produces much more data and business are now beginning to rely more on data than instincts. With the emergence of great web-based tools, metrics are now more accessible and usable for business management.
Collaboration is one step away from metrics. The recent announcement of Salesforce Chatter is a great way for organizations to distribute metrics/dashboards and better understand what is going on in their business. Internal tools like Chatter will help deliver and notify line-employees and managers how to better run their businesses.
What is your outlook for 2010?
Since this is our first year of being a commercial company, as the founder and CEO I am keeping the company very focused on Delivering Success in a Month in a repeatable fashion. Because at this stage in our evolution it is all about execution and focus.