Why choose either cloud-based OR on-premise delivery for your software, when you can do both?
by Ariella Shoham, EMEA SRM FIeld Marketing Manager

Last month, we got together again for LicensingLive London, our annual “cloud gathering” at the Royal Institute of Great Britain in London. The surroundings – the RIGB Library, surrounded by hundreds (if not thousands) of scientific publications and books was the ideal setting for discussing some of the hottest topics in the world of Software as a Service.

First to present at LicensingLive: London 2012 was Ansgar Dodt, SafeNet’s EMEA VP of Sales, who discussed how “cloud-enabled” licensing is actually a real opportunity for traditional software vendors to broaden their delivery models to new technology platform.  Ansgar set the stage with a short discussion on licensing goals: “Licensing abuse prevention” on the one hand and “segmented licensing” on the other. This was followed by a review of the three major technologies software vendors should consider for software delivery – Cloud, Mobile and Virtualized environments – and concluded to show how cloud-enabled licensing enables capturing real-time data for business and usage intelligence leading to flexible, customized licensing models, regardless of the delivery platform.

Forrester Analyst Dr. Holger Kisker spoke about “Hybrid Customer Insight: Data Collection and Analysis” from on-premise, in the cloud. Holger shared data from Forrester’s recent software survey, with stats on how “flexible subscription deals are going to cannibalize traditional software licensing” and that “customers are demanding more licensing agility”. This lead to a discussion around the cloud “challenges” of customer insight and how the cloud changes the business-process based on this customer insight.  So for example the differences between the linear business process of traditional software versus the continuous business process of SaaS, and how SaaS requires continuous customer insight in order to succeed.

Luke Glen, Aria’s EMEA VP of Sales, discussed integrating licensing and billing solutions. After an initial joint presentation with SafeNet’s Todd Steel to differentiate between licensing and billing (yes, they aren’t the same), Luke reviewed the “new software monetization lifecycle” and demonstrated how licensing and billing work together through the 4 lifecycle steps – packaging, delivery, payment and renewals.  Luke concluded with case studies of how all  partners in a SaaS offering should “play nice” within the eco-system of the SaaS offering.

After a delicious lunch, Mahesha Pandit from Xilcion (who is also a consultant at the Knowledge Transfer Network) walked us through 10 steps to practical cloud adoption, dispersing myths like  “Legacy applications cannot be taken to the cloud” and “SaaS development needs a separate life cycle”.

To wrap up this great day, Todd Steel, Sentinel Cloud’s Senior product manager, showed us what a true revolution cloud licensing is to traditional software delivery, and how, amongst others, cloud licensing provides tools to improve customer usage tracking and customize offering/packaging, authorize usage per feature, and seamlessly upgrade between packages and provides tracking and measurement tools to convert trials and freemiums to paying customer.

Maybe it was the books, or the combination of speakers from different industries and disciplines, whatever it was, we all walked out feeling we learned something. Maybe it’s not as ground breaking as Faraday’s Law of induction (his magnetic lab is actually on the ground floor of the RIGB), but at least we learned enough to help us go out and diversify the way we sell software!

To view the presentations from this event, please visit this page: LicensingLive London 2012.

Looking forward to seeing you next year,