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This is an excellent article; it neatly identifies the major concerns companies are struggling with as they look to leverage *aaS solutions. A concern I have with implementing multiple production SaaS solutions is the ability to mine data for the purpose of business analytics once data has been distributed across multiple providers. Have you seen this issue raised by other business executives and do you have any thoughts on how to address this issue? I also have a comment on the second challenge listed, “Application reliability/uptime”. I could not agree more that SaaS companies and cloud providers must improve the level of availability in their data center architectures if they plan on attracting mission critical applications. In the interest of full disclosure, I work for Stratus Technologies, Inc. www.stratus.com; we produce the world’s most reliable fault tolerant servers delivering 5-nines and greater uptime. I believe that a component of delivering 4-nines of availability at the application level will require higher levels of availability from the underlying infrastructure.

John, thank you for your kind words. I have invested in a SaaS company called Pivotlink which provides a cloud-based BI solution. They are now moving several TB of data to the cloud. This data is coming from other SaaS applications, i.e., it is itself cloud-based, or it comes from on-premise applications. If by data mining you mean predictive analytics then I have not seen much a SaaS solution for that area.

Evangelos: I agree with John Green. What a great article. You have presented the most common concerns that almost every business user has to leverage these SaaS technologies. Again, great job.

Here are some more of operational concerns I heard from my customers. Thought it might help CEOs make their commitments and wrote it as New Year Resolution for a SaaS CEO - http://www.prudentcloud.com/saas/new-year-resolutions-of-saas-ceo-28122009/

I would be curious to see those numbers today. I think that the overall perseption of SaaS is good. I think that the security concerns are being successfully addressed and dealt with and the TCO issue is under control.. Overall I think that SaaS is the future. Thanks for the post.

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Evangelos Simoudis is a Senior Managing Director at Trident Capital where he focuses on investments in SaaS, Internet and Data.

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