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TRENDS
 


October ASPnews Top 50
By ASPnews.com Staff

October 8, 2002

Two software companies with very different backgrounds are this month’s new entrants to our Top 20 Providers and Top 30 Enablers listings. The changing shape of the software industry is also a factor in the departures of the two companies they replace.

Sadly, our Top 20 Providers list this month loses one of the ASP industry’s biggest success stories. Despite its impressive tally of 1.5 million subscriber accounts and a profitable business, McAfee.com is no longer an independent company after its parent Network Associates finally completed the long drawn-out buyback of the shares issued in its IPO.

ASPnews Top 20 Archive
»  September 2002 Top 20 
»  August 2002 Top 20 
»  July 2002 Top 20 
»  June 2002 Top 20 
»  May 2002 Top 20 
»  April 2002 Top 20 
»  March 2002 Top 20 
»  February 2002 Top 20 
»  January 2002 Top 20 
»  December 2001 Top 20 
»  November 2001 Top 20 
»  October 2001 Top 20 
»  September 2001 Top 20 
»  August 2001 Top 20 
»  July 2001 Top 20 
»  June 2001 Top 20 
»  May 2001 Top 20 
»  April 2001 Top 20 
That means McAfee.com no longer meets our criteria for inclusion as an ASP pureplay that generates its core revenue from network-based applications and/or services (the same rule also excludes successful ASP divisions of other leading software vendors, such as Oracle and Peoplesoft).

The vacancy is filled by a smaller but highly innovative ASP. Online accounting software provider Intacct has been one of the few Internet-based startups to have made a success of providing accounting software as a service. Its sophisticated XML-based integration capabilities, modular achitecture and flexible pricing model are all examples of its willingness to innovate for market advantage.

Another factor in its success has been its nurturing of accountants and systems integrators as sales and implementation partners for its service. Continuing its evangelism for the net-native ASP model, later this month Intacct will bring together many of those partners to share and discuss best practice at its NetGain 2002 conference.

SAP and ASPs
At the opposite end of the spectrum of business software vendors, enterprise software giant SAP is the new entrant to the ASPnews Top 30 Enablers listing. In the past, ASPnews has excluded SAP because of its small tally of officially accredited ASPs and a lack of innovation in supporting the ASP model.

SAP now earns its place thanks to its embracing of the Web services model, and in particular its innovative X-Apps technology, which is designed to support business processes that cut across multiple applications from a variety of vendors. The commitment to this new, modular view of business software is a clear sign that SAP now gets the online model.

SAP’s arrival fills a vacancy created by the departure of Agiliti. The company continues to provide a range of MSP and hosting services, but has now de-emphasized the ASP-enabling services that were the reason for its inclusion in the Top 30 Enablers list. Although software vendors are still keen to offer hosted versions of their software, they no longer feel the need to turn to a specialist enabler to help them achieve it — another sign of how well-accepted the ASP model has become.



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