Host your own SaaS with Open Source – the potential of Mosso


Flask Data provides a one-stop cloud subscription for EDC, data management and statistics.

Show me a profitable business application-as-a-Service (SaaS) company.

There is a lot of trade talk about the success of Salesforce.com. Here is a company with a $3.2BN market cap as of Oct 26, 2008 currently trading at 24 down from 72, 5 months ago.

In 2007 – SF.com  posted a net income of $480K on revenue of $497M. Compare this to BMC Software,  a software vendor that provides system and service management solutions for the enterprise. BMC has a current market cap of $4.2BN, trading at 23 down from 39, 3 months ago. In 2007 – BMC Software posted $215M net income on $1.5BN in sales.

In plain language – Salesforce.com does not or cannot charge high enough prices for their services to sustain long-term profitability and growth.   At low price points; Free Open Source on inexpensive hosting becomes a highly-competitive alternative, especially for an SME.

Five years ago – the barrier to entry was application functionality but today, Free Open Source line of business applications like Sugar CRM Community edition are mature, full-featured applications with very little, if any, missing features and some unique advantages that Open Source offers.  Salesforce.com imposes a unique IP address/user constraint which can be very annoying. In SugarCRM, if you get User logged out when IP dynamically changed, just change 1 line in config.php

‘verify_client_ip’ => true, to false

Suppose you need a CRM system (if you’re a large shop, you already have one – like Siebel). We’re a small group of 5 guys – and we were using Salesforce.com with one of our business partners and wanted to use SF.com for our own business. The cost is $325/month or almost $4,000/year for 5 users. You can get 90% of the functionality from Sugar CRM for the cost of a onetime installation (which will take less than an hour of your time or about $150 if you pay someone) and $15/month for the hosting (if you use dreamhost.com, like we do). That’s a net savings of $3,000 / year.  dreamhost give us 700GB – more than SF.com, and the response/time is at least as good.

I know you’re saying that dreamhost.com at $15/month can’t compete with the scalability, reliability and service levels of SF.com. Maybe,  maybe not – but if you want muscle – consider Mosso.

For $100 per month, Mosso will sell you 80 GB of SAN storage, 2000 GB of bandwidth, a control panel to create sites, email accounts, databases, etc. and customer support.

Mosso says it takes radically different approach to Web hosting, using enterprise-level architecture. It deploys each website across clusters of servers, so when a server crashes or a hard drive fails, the other servers in the cluster pick up the slack without downtime. Their promise: for every 1 hour of downtime, they will reimburse you for 1 day off your bill.

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Flask Data is a technology company with a strong people focus. We are a diverse group of computer scientists and clinical operations specialists based in Israel, the US and India. We are accomplished at providing our customers with the most effective way to achieve high quality clinical data and assure patient safety. There is no single solution that works for every clinical trial. We work hard to understand your unique situation. We work with your team to develop the best solution to achieve high quality clinical data and assure patient safety the same day you engage with patients.

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