SaaS has been around for a while but it is relatively new to maritime. To help explain SaaS, I wanted to provide additional historical context.
Concur, a travel and expense software company, was the first company to sell software as a subscription service. Interestingly, when it went public in 1998 it was still selling its products in the traditional way: on floppy disks and CD-ROMs. It was only through continued evolution that it created the subscription model knows as Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), selling to SAP for $8.3B in what was at the time the largest ever SaaS acquisition. Saleforce, launched in 1999, was the first SaaS solution built from scratch. When Micorsoft launched Office 365, the subscription version of the popular Microsoft Office productivity suite, SaaS as a business model went global.
One of the many pillars of SaaS is the ability to keep individual clients’ data secure, safe, and separate from the others. Customers rely on these basic facts: My data will be secure and no one else will see it.
Businesses got the message. Companies such as SAP, Salesforce and Microsoft service hundreds of thousands of businesses and tens of millions of individual users on their SaaS platforms. A random selection of the top SaaS companies by revenue includes global brands like Adobe, Oracle, Zendesk, Cisco, Shopify and Zoom. In total, there are tens of thousands of global SaaS companies, generating revenues of $145.5 billion annually and serving a total of 14 billion customers.
Indeed, SaaS is safe.
Some of those SaaS companies were corporate spin offs, such as PayPal (from eBay in 2002). The corporate spin-off strategy has proven to be effective. Across all industries, corporate spin-offs offer the opportunity for organizations to refocus their investments and improve growth strategies with specific products and services. The results? Corporate spin-offs consistently outperform the overall market. Or as the global consultancy Interbrand puts it:
Spinoffs have a clear advantage—they can increase the focus on the core, which in turn reduces distractions and improves performance and potential margins, as well as the ability to raise capital and introduce more nimble growth strategies… A freed-up, focused business with brand equity, operations, assets, and/or growth potential is attractive to investors or well-aligned partners, especially ones who are interested in a particular sector or growth strategy. (SOURCE: Interbrand)
In short, spin-offs provide an opportunity to sharpen focus, create value, and accelerate growth.
Such was the case with OrbitMI. Shipping experts at Stena Bulk and MIT-trained engineers developed Orbit based on the needs that they saw within the maritime. They spun off the technology to OrbitMI in 2019 for the reasons stated above: To create a focused, nimble company that could help drive change in the maritime industry.
OrbitMI combines the best of SaaS security and the corporate spin-off strategy. We function at the highest level of security and confidentiality, which is fundamental to any SaaS business’s ability to scale. Our customers’ data is their own – and will never be shared with anyone else (read about our data management policies). Our independence allows OrbitMI continue to innovate, create new partnerships and grow business with new customers.
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