Published On: Fri, Aug 28th, 2015

NYC Rises As A Hub For Software-As-A-Service Startups


Debating a significance of Software-as-a-Service prolonged ago became a good approach to dwindle yourself as a luddite.

The craving program marketplace has turn a SaaS market, and ancestral craving titans like Oracle, SAP and Microsoft have been operative feverishly for years to reposition themselves as cloud companies. But series means change, and it’s a new entrants that have tangible SaaS.

Since a IPO of Salesforce, a initial loyal craving SaaS titan, in 2004, SaaS companies opposite a U.S. have sum over $200Bn of open marketplace value, generating a call of earnings for VC-backers that has helped to fuel a new frothiness in private markets.

We are usually usually removing started, however. While consumers were many quicker to welcome a cloud, social, and mobile –- Facebook and Twitter alone have a sum marketplace top that is some-more than half of a sum marketplace top of any singular open SaaS company! –- enterprises have been slower to pierce (but they are throwing up).

Finally, we can’t find a convincing CIO in corporate America anymore who isn’t cloud initial in her orientation. Forrester estimates put this stability transition as expected to beget over $150B of annual new SaaS output by 2020, and a investigate suggests that will bloat $300B annually by 2025. That could proportion to over $1 trillion of marketplace value.

The SaaS winners to date have been mostly clever in Silicon Valley, with a delegate building in Boston.

As a marketplace continues to mature, and as we watch a blossoming of SaaS activity in New York City, we trust that NYC is staid to turn a genuine personality in a arrangement of companies heading a subsequent call of craving transformation. Ultimately, we trust that NYC could even plea a friends in a Bay Area for SaaS leadership, and a low dive into a information on new activity appears to bear that out.

NYC SaaS Activity Rapidly Accelerating

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To take a heat of a SaaS ecosystem in New York, we initial looked during investing activity. Measured by series of appropriation rounds or dollars invested, a trend is transparent – investments in NYC SaaS are augmenting during a quick pace.

How does a Big Apple smoke-stack adult opposite a Bay? To find out, we looked during financings opposite a whole tech ecosystem in both a Bay Area and NYC to calculate a apportionment of altogether startup activity in any area that was done adult by craving SaaS companies. Our formula uncover that, behind in 2009, SaaS startups done adult around 20% of altogether investment activity in both NYC and a Bay Area.

However, if we quick brazen to 2014, we’ve seen SaaS startups usually flourishing share of a NYC investment activity, while staying solid in a Bay Area. Not usually is SaaS activity flourishing in NYC, though it is dramatically hidden share from normal strengths in AdTech, consumer, and FinTech.

NYC Closing a Gap

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Are some-more SaaS companies being saved in NYC vs. a Bay Area? The brief answer is no…or, maybe some-more accurately, not yet.

Looking behind to 2009, a series of investment rounds in NYC SaaS companies done adult usually 25% of a series of investment rounds in Bay Area SaaS companies. By 2014, that figure had grown to 50%. Total investment dollars tell a identical story, with NYC SaaS companies lifting usually 15% of a dollars that Bay Area SaaS companies lifted in 2009, though augmenting to 33% by 2014.

Whichever approach we cut it, NYC SaaS startups are shutting a opening to their west seashore brethren. Will NYC locate adult to a Bay? That seems maybe a widen – while a opening might be closing, a Valley is still using extremely fast, and is frequency display signs of weakness. But regardless of who’s out in front in another 10 years, it’s increasingly tough to disagree opposite NYC’s increasingly applicable purpose in a market.

Ones to Watch

The NYC SaaS ecosystem has seen some important successes already. Medidata Solutions, a SaaS height used by a curative industry, was arguably a initial good straight SaaS IPO success story. Medidata was spawned out of a investigate lab during Columbia, went open in a inlet of a recession, and now trades during tighten to a $3 billion valuation.

We’ve also seen successful exits such as a merger of Buddy Media by Salesforce, and a acquisitions of TXVia and Divide by Google, to name a few (disclosure: both TxVia and Divide were Primary Venture Partners portfolio companies).

But it’s looking during a tube that gets us vehement for NYC’s destiny intensity as an craving SaaS powerhouse. Companies like Datadog and Digital Ocean are origination overwhelming advance in a IT infrastructure space, delivering on a guarantee of vast information analytics and cloud hosting, respectively, for IT professionals. MongoDB is redefining a database landscape with a open source model.

In a universe of amicable media, many enterprises demeanour to Sprinklr, a new serve to a private Unicorn Club, for a program collection to conduct their amicable media presence. And if we wish to make clarity of all that amicable media data, demeanour no serve than NYC’s possess Dataminr to renovate those open datasets into actionable signals. Across a spectrum, many NYC-based firms are staid to turn dermatitis stars.

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Why Will NYC Lead a Next Generation of SaaS?

The SaaS landscape is fast changing as IT megatrends continue to redefine a keys to success for craving startups. Web and mobile locals currently make adult an augmenting commission of a workforce, that has led to an blast of enterprise-focused applications catering to their augmenting final for always-on, mobile record and information access. In this environment, simply charity a cloud-based program resolution or mobile app is not adequate to safeguard success. The many useful collection are those that are tailored to a specific needs of a craving user, that means incorporating industry-specific imagination to rise a resolution that truly addresses a singular needs of a given user population.

The early days of SaaS were dominated by plane applications – companies like Salesforce, SuccessFactors, ServiceNow and Workday all built SaaS monsters by addressing business opposite any straight market. Early on we had to be plane – there usually weren’t adequate business in a given straight who were gentle with a SaaS indication to build large, vertically-oriented businesses. But as SaaS acceptance has exploded, we’ve seen an blast of straight SaaS opportunities.

It is these straight opportunities that we consider will be quite successful in New York. In today’s SaaS market, success is reduction than ever a duty of topping a early tech hurdles of building SaaS platforms – hurdles best tackled by a engineering bravery of Silicon Valley. Today we trust success is driven many some-more by bargain of and entrance to business – dynamics that expostulate a origination of product-market fit and early entrance to customers.

So where can a fledgling SaaS association optimally position itself to entrance a domain imagination to rise a right product and entrance a patron bottom to sell that product? I’ll give we one guess…

NYC: The Domain Expertise Capital of a World

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Simply put, a extent of domain imagination in NYC is forlorn and a vicious item for craving SaaS startups. Medidata’s first and ultimate success was in no tiny partial formed on a position precisely in a core of a Philly-to-Boston pharmaceutical/biotech corridor. NYC startups targeting a genuine estate zone have a largest marketplace in a universe during their doorstep. In a worlds of financial and insurance, many of a largest companies in these sectors reside within Manhattan’s 23 block miles.

Squeezed into that same space are some of a biggest names in advertising, publishing, consumer brands and veteran services. With one in 5 of a SP 500 headquartered within 75 miles of NYC, SaaS companies have many of their biggest intensity business right on their doorstep, clearly no matter that courtesy they target. Which sectors are we examination many closely for straight opportunities? Pay courtesy to genuine estate, healthcare/pharma, consumer/CPG and veteran services, among others.

But what about a opportunities to aim a tiny and medium-sized business landscape? Does NYC make clarity for these markets? If we consider carrying 5x a series of SMBs as possibly San Francisco or Boston suggests opportunity, afterwards a answer is yes.

With over half a million of those businesses in a city, by distant a nation’s largest bottom of SMB business are on a doorstep too. Such firmness of business drives innovation, facilitates business indication experimentation, and creates early patron merger generally efficient. These dynamics have aided a origination of SMB SaaS successes like Booker, Namely, SinglePlatform, Squarespace, and Yodle.

A Concrete Jungle Full of Talent

Strong talent is a pivotal care for any startup. NYC stacks adult good due to high numbers of well-trained graduates fasten tech startups after stints during a easterly seashore campuses of firms like Facebook and Google, or some of a biggest consulting, banking and law firms. Many graduates are drawn to a Big Apple from opposite a country, seeking a energetic and different lifestyle of a informative core that is NYC. The same sociological dynamics that have led to a repatriation of San Francisco and Boston from a Valley and Route 128 are heading talent from all over a universe to come build record businesses in a “World’s Greatest City.” Enabled by this influx of talent, NYC tech jobs have grown during 4 times a rate of sum pursuit expansion in a city given 2009.

Moving Forward

The city has built a clever bottom of local collateral providers to maintain this flourishing SaaS ecosystem. SaaS startups now have during slightest 20 committed seed investors to representation in their home market. With a flourishing bottom of talent, a full element of collateral providers, and core marketplace dynamics that play directly to a trend towards verticalization of a SaaS landscape, we design NYC’s position to usually strengthen in a entrance years.

Perhaps a usually superb doubt during this indicate is will a flourishing SaaS ecosystem be means to build standalone anchor tenants in a NYC community, holding their place among a other courtesy heading firms that are headquartered here?

Ultimately, to plea a Bay Area for marketplace leadership, we need a call of Medidatas to build additional pillars ancillary a NYC platform. As Medidata co-founder and President Glen de Vries pronounced to me, “The East Coast record scene, that New York has turn a epicenter of, is formed on people who came from within existent industries, and motionless to use record to reinvent them. It’s a sheer contrariety to a indication of technologists looking for businesses to reinvent. That’s because NYC is a ideal height for straight SaaS. We’re certain Medidata won’t be a usually open straight SaaS association here, and we design a whole ecosystem to thrive.”

See a full NYC SaaS display on Slideshare.

Featured Image: gary718/Shutterstock

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