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Salesnet re-emerges from RightNow acquisition with new SaaS SFA

Four years after it was acquired by RightNow and two years since revamping its strategy, Salesnet is returning to the market for SaaS SFA software.

After being acquired by RightNow and what was effectively a two-year absence, Salesnet is returning to the Software as a Service (SaaS) CRM market.

Salesnet was acquired by RightNow Technologies in 2006. It focused on SFA and sales processes with its application, which RightNow intended to integrate with its own recently released SFA product to round out its customer service and knowledge management offering.

That didn’t work out, said Scott Farmer, CEO of the new Salesnet.

"The very large RightNow installed base looked at Salesnet and decided it wasn't the right fit for them," Farmer said.

So the two-year plan to bring the applications together was scrapped. Instead, RightNow turned to Farmer's company, SFA Strategies, which had been a partner of Salesnet's from the beginning and, under a joint venture, had it take over Salesnet.

In the past two years, Salesnet has moved its headquarters and its data center from Boston to Atlanta, its disaster recovery from Chicago to Boston (a different location from its old data center) and turned over most of the staff but for a few developers, Farmer said.

The company has also revamped the user interface and added support for multiple browsers.

Farmer acknowledges that Salesnet has lost some ground to its competitors in the past two years but pledged it would catch up quickly.

"From the standard stuff that people really use, I think we're already caught up," he said. "Where there's still some room is the marketing communications piece, but that's happening real, real soon. The other piece would be around analytics."

Salesnet plans to add new analytics functionality with its next upgrade and is separately releasing a mobile capability. It's aiming for a quarterly upgrade schedule.

Salesnet also lost some customers over the intervening years but has kept about 185, with a total of more than 5,000 users. Salesnet is also offering only one "standard" edition at $100 per user per month, though Farmer said the company would be offering discounts as the product emerges out of beta.

"We're still the best out there at driving sales effectiveness," he said.


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