Pervasive Updates Tools For Growing SaaS Market - InformationWeek

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Pervasive Updates Tools For Growing SaaS Market

The company's revised SaaS Data Integrator and Business Integrator includes a new subscription-pricing model.

Pervasive Software on Tuesday introduced upgrades of its integration middleware for connecting online CRM systems with back-office applications, and launched its first subscription-pricing model.

Pervasive, Informatica, and other integration software vendors are looking to take advantage of the expected growth in software-as-a-service implementations over the next few years. These companies are attacking a key weakness of SaaS -- the ability to synchronize online data with in-house information stored in back-end databases.

Pervasive is offering two products: SaaS Data Integrator and Business Integrator. The former performs extraction, transformation, and loading of data, as well as real-time, scheduled, or batch execution. The latter is an enterprise service bus, which is an event-driven, standards-based messaging engine.

The upgrade allows Pervasive customers to connect to Salesforce.com 8.0 and Oracle Siebel CRM OnDemand 12 with in-house business applications from SAP, Oracle, and Microsoft. In addition, the integration vendor has added support for NetSuite, a SaaS vendor that offers CRM software, e-commerce software, and ERP applications.

The trend among SaaS vendors is to build underneath their services an application development platform that third-party software makers can tap into to extend those services. Salesforce is the furthest along, having introduced in January a set of programming tools called Apex.

As the SaaS vendors improve their integration capabilities, companies like Pervasive are staying ahead by adding capabilities not offered by the service providers. "They provide basic capabilities that grow over time, but it's never enough for all the use cases that are out there," David Inbar, director of worldwide marketing for Pervasive, told InformationWeek. "The primary interest of the SaaS vendor is to get more people on their platforms, and not in optimizing everything customers have [in-house], so they can get the most out of the service."

Recent enhancements, for example, to Salesforce application programming interfaces have made it possible for Pervasive to provide connectors that require less configuration and code writing, and can perform more complex transactions between databases quicker, Inbar said. Although the APIs of all SaaS vendors incorporate Web services standards, integration requirements vary considerably among services. "If there's ever an example where Web services are not standard, than this is it," Inbar said. "The standards that we've all longed for is partially here, but there's a lot that isn't there."

To align itself with the SaaS pay-as-you-go subscription model, Pervasive introduced similar pricing for the first time. The company's integration products are available for a starting price of $300 per month.

As SaaS technology improves, companies are expected to buy into the on-demand model in greater numbers to avoid the implementation and maintenance expense of software, particularly those applications that aren't business critical. The portion of new business software revenue generated from SaaS products is expected to increase to 25% by 2011 from 5% last year, according to IT analyst firm Gartner.

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