Template:Infobox Company NetSuite Inc. is developing on-demand software or Software as a Service (SaaS) for small to medium enterprises. NetSuite was originally incorporated as NetLedger by its founders Larry Ellison and a young protoge Evan Goldberg and later had a name change to its current NetSuite Inc.
Oracle Corporation's CEO Lawrence J. Ellison (Larry Ellison) during and just after the dotcom boom worked with two protege's as a calculated guess to endeavour to dominate the market place of what has now become on-demand software or as it has most recently described Software as a Service. Originally, Goldberg wanted to move into a very narrow marketspace providing 'automated sales' tools. However, Ellison encouraged Goldberg to build on-line accounting, the space where Oracle was headed at that time for larger businesses. In 1999, Ellison worked with Mark Benioff (an ex-Oracle Employee) to start Salesforce.com a company that would focus on a narrow business activity and get into more hands very quickly -- reportedly the precise business plan that Goldberg was persuaded not to visit by Ellison.
As pointed out by Gartner, NetSuite Inc., is the second fastest growing software company in USA (2005) in terms of revenues. NetSuite on-demand software is reputedly the most widely used integrated services software used by small to medium sized companies in the USA. However, to make a claim such as this, it should be noted that there are very few other vendors who have integrated their software in this manner due to security issues and risk minimisation.
According to product brochures released by NetSuite Inc. as of 2005 NetSuite has released NetSuite 10 as its base service with NetCRM, NetERP, NetCommerce being other services that form a totally integrated package for use by monthly, quarterly, or annual subscribers. NetSuite also rents out NetSuite Small Business (NSSB) which is a smaller package specifically for micro-traders and very small businesses. NSSB is a derivative of the original Oracle Small Business package made available to NetSuite to be a viable business in its early days of trading.
As NetSuite is implemented around the world to meet local circumstances, NetSuite is apparently fostering the concept that it is a service provider rather than just a software vendor. Analysts agree that software vending is becoming intermingled with service provision enabling micro businesses to outsource back office functions.
An example of this service provision can be observed where NetSuite in Australia has worked closely with AussiePay to build an Australianized payroll service. Through purchasing a NetSuite package and then also purchasing the AussiePay module, a micro-business can have the benefits of a full payroll office to calculate, distribute and record the pay for each member of staff. This includes making superannuation payments, tax liabilities and even forwarding all necessary forms to taxation officials.
While for some businesses this may be an extremely viable proposition, NetSuite Australia in not opening the platform to a number of vendors may actually cause their small business customers to be paying a premium cost for these services as no competition exists in this instance. Rather than working closely with one service provider, numbers of analysts in the industry consider that NetSuite Australia should provide a setting where any third-party provider can interface to NetSuite and provide such a service in competition with others.
While NetSuite Competitors may be listed as Microsoft Business Solutions, Salesforce.com and Siebel Systems On-Demand Software, Rob Turner of Inc Magazine suggests there really is no other competitor in the business providing a totally integrated package the way that NetSuite Inc does it. This claim may very well be a hollow claim when considered from the perspective of risk management. The very way in which NetSuite pulls everything together for your business into the one platform could be seen to be a high risk -- what if the platform goes down, is attacked, or the company running the services is bankrupted? The claim that there is no other competitor providing a totally integrated service may therefore be seen as a negative rather than a positive statement.
From another perspective NetSuite Inc., faces competition from a wide range of companies providing software to solve business problems department by department. For example, NetSuite Inc., fights head-to-head in the marketplace with MYOB and Quickbooks two formidable opponents who have had the small business world of accounting very much to themselves for many years. On the other hand, NetSuite faces stiff competition from companies providing CRM software, such as Salesforce.com and Siebel Systems. In another setting, NetSuite Inc., faces competition from online commerce providers.
The two major fronts at which NetSuite Inc., faces competition are those competing with on-demand services similar to NetSuite in one aspect or another, and the second front are all those older and more established systems that have a substantial market share in their own department within business settings. Only time will tell whether an integrated system can survive in a setting where these business problems have been solved independently within a business, and are seen to be best solved independently to minimize the risk of failure should the selected software become a liability to the company.
Recently, however, developments in Europe have brought to the fore solutions such as 24SevenOffice and SuperOffice. A careful comparison between NetSuite and an offering such as 24SevenOffice show that developers of NetSuite and 24SevenOffice are working in the same space with many chunks of functionality missing in the NetSuite offering, and similarly there are also chunks of functionality found in NetSuite missing in 24SevenOffice.
The pricing of 24SevenOffice is an indicator of the market to which 24SevenOffice are focussed which is perhaps one of the marked differences between 24SevenOffice and NetSuite. NetSuite is priced in the thousands of dollars, usually starting from US$2,500 and upwards (somtimes to $500,000 or more) indicating that NetSuite is seeking mid-sized businesses. 24SevenOffice, on the other hand signals its simpler approach through its pricing which ranges from free in the first year and is in the range of up to no more than US$1,000 pa.
- NetSuite company page
- NetSuite Compendium - an independent site providing background information and pointing to things NetSuite online.
- Small Business Computing Magazine Review of NetSuite.
- InfoWorld - compares NetSuite, RightNow, SalesNet & Salesforce.com.
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