Subscribed San Francisco ’14 is in full swing! After a rousing keynote from CEO Tien Tzuo this morning, the hallways are buzzing, the booths are humming and the panels are standing-room only. But don’t just take our word for it. Here are two new pieces from Beagle Research Group and Forbes confirming what everyone here is talking about: the Subscription Economy has arrived.
Dennis Pombriant, Beagle Research Group
Tien Tzuo, CEO of Zuora, gave the speech of his life today, one that Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft should study for its content if not its style.
Tzuo’s company Zuora, started the subscription billing market back when billing was a big and the only deal that SaaS and other subscription companies had to think about. But over the last few years Zuora has built out a product line that supports a vision of a changed marketplace dedicated to the values of what futurist Jeremy Rifkin calls the “collaborative commons.” In the commons it is more blessed to borrow, share, rent, and, yes, subscribe, than it is to buy, own, and hold.
Tzuo has been the leading proponent of an economy based on subscriptions and today’s speech will be seen as a turning point that took the subscription economy to the mainstream. If anything it was a victory speech, a time when Tzuo and his band of brothers and sisters could say, “See it worked.” But it was also a time that rededicated Zuora and its people to a greater vision of a subscription culture. Tzuo acknowledged as much even if he hasn’t used the words yet when he announced three new directions and offerings that will enable subscriptions’ glide into the mainstream.
Tom Tauli, Forbes
In the software world, categories like ERP (enterprise resource planning) and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) have created tremendous value, as seen with the success of companies like Salesforce.com and Workday.
But there may be a new category emerging: relationship business management or RBM. Think of this as essentially using new technologies to transform business models.
And the company that’s leading the charge is Zuora. In short order, it has made RBM a reality for many top companies like Acxiom, NCR, HP, American Express, TripAdvisor and Qualcomm.
OK, so what is the magic here? Well, at the core is a rethinking of how to relate to customers — that is, going from transactions to subscriptions. A clear example of this is Netflix, which has upended the media industry.
“Customers are demanding something different,” said Tien Tzuo, who is the CEO and founder of Zuora. “They want services. They want companies to take care of things.”