June 2019
Will Libra, the Cryptocurrency, Affect Your SaaS Business?

Welcome to The Cirrostratus Group June newsletter.

Libra, the cryptocurrency announced by Facebook, is a ways away from being in use but it is worth understanding and thinking about the potential future impact. I've included information below on Libra.

Database as a Service has come a long way in the past couple years. As a SaaS provider you may not need to go beyond Azure or AWS for the database in your product unless you have unique requirements but either way it's worth reading the new Forrester Wave on Database as a Service. It's not unexpected that AWS and Azure are in the leader category.

I found this case study on SaaS pricing interesting which describes how pricing evolved at a small software company. Although their pricing model is pretty unique the description of how they got to that point is applicable to everyone, align with how your customers use your product and experiment with different approaches.

I'm always interested in hearing about your experiences with delivering cloud applications.

Paul Ressler
The Cirrostratus Group  

    How Will Libra, the New Cryptocurrency Affect Your SaaS Business?   
Libra new digital currency. Cryptocurrency concept design with realistic 3d  gold coin with identity color. Brilliant illustration for your electronics financial_ money symbol background.  

Libra, the cryptocurrency recently announced by Facebook, assuming it is successful, could have a significant affect on the world of payments. This is the first cryptocurrency I've seen that could become a mainstream, non-speculative cryptocurrency, for everyday use. The Libra website has some good information including the Libra whitepaper. I also found Ben Thompson's description of some of the strategic impacts of Libra, both to Facebook and others, fascinating reading. Much of the general press information on Libra has been focused on the Facebook privacy concerns, definitely a concern, but only part of the story.

The first use cases will likely be personal transfer payments similar to Venmo. International remittances are another area where there will be significant impact and cost savings. If you are in any part of the eCommerce space the impact is likely to be a strengthening of Facebook's position when Facebook is somewhere in the value chain. Transaction costs are expected to be significantly less than with credit cards although it isn't clear yet what consumer and business protections will be in place. These changes will have an impact on your eCommerce related SaaS business.

If you are a SaaS provider outside of eCommerce, especially SMB or consumer applications, some future questions may be; Should I accept this currency for payment? Should I include the currency in my multi-currency functionality? Will the use of this currency provide new and unique functionality that will be useful to my customers? What new threats does this cryptocurrency have for my business.

Although these questions are down the road, it's worth understanding about the proposed structure and functionality of Libra and to continue to stay current on the topic.

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