Dubious SaaS Awards

SaaS Directory has announced September’s most popular SaaS companies.  The top 5 are:

September’s top 5 US winners are:
#1 – Gogrid
#2 – WebECS
#3 – CariNet
#4 – Rackspace
#5 – American Data Technology

That’s a strange list..or perhaps SaaS Directory has a strange definition of “SaaS companies” since the top 5 are all in the web hosting business. (ASP, anyone?).  Well, it triggered my curiosity enough to dig deeper and look at the full list.  I’m not picking on any business here, simply stating my own ignorance, but I have to admit I haven’t heard of Robson Communications, Younicycle, Apptix or Yuba, just to name a few.   But perhaps it’s just me, so I asked around on Twitter:

How many “SaaS” companies do you recognize in this so-called “most popular” list?

Here are a few responses:

list1

Hm.. you tell me:-)

list2

6 from former Industry Analyst and current SaaS Exec Chris Selland – should say something about the list

list3

Ben makes a living writing about this stuff, and he only recognizes a third of these companies…

There’s one on the list I know by pure co-incidence: Vembu Technologies, whose CEO I happened to meet at his brother Zoho CEO Sridhar Vembu’s office (disclosure: Zoho is Cloudave’s exclusive Sponsor).  I guess it proves it’s an entrepreneurial family: but wouldn’t Zoho be a more recognizable SaaS brand than Vembu?

The more I look at the SaaS Directory, the more confused I am.  Or perhaps they are the ones quite confused?  Here’s their definition of SaaS Project Management:

SaaS is an effective project management tool which enables teams to work together towards achieving common objectives dramatically improving the overall user experience while offering increased flexibility

“SaaS is an effective tool”… LOL.  (By the way, for SaaS PM discussions you may want to read this thread, or Andrew Filev’s PM 2.0 Blog)

Clicking further I’ve discovered the SaaS Directory Forums – they all seem to be overrun by commercial  spam:

saasforum

I rest my case.  Awards are a great way to recognize effort, success – but some awards can only harm a company’s reputation. As for the SaaS Directory – well, it’s a directory sans the SaaS part.

LinkedIn Twitter
Publisher / Editor @ CloudAve and Enterprise Irregulars. Industry Observer, Blogger, Startup Advisor, Program Chair @ SVASE (Silicon Valley Association of Startup Entrepreneurs). In his "prior life" spent 15 years immersed in the business of Enterprise Software, at management positions with SAP, IBM, Deloitte, KPMG and the like.