Stemed From SensorsData, SaaS Should Do More Than Focusing on Privatization
COVID-19 and China

SensorsData(神策数据) is an IT services provider featured in business intelligence and enterprise data solution. SensorsData has secured four rounds of funding series including the Angel Round at a total amount of USD 66 Million. The latest funding series C was closed in April 2018 with the amount of USD 44 million led by Warburg Pingus and followed by Sequoia China, Linear Venture, Future Capital, DCM China, Xiang He Capital, and MorningSide VC.

Since big data has become a hot topic in past 10 years, especially after 2012. As indicated in Google’s trends, big data’s trends climbed up rapidly in 2012 and thereafter stayed at a high level. Big data has left laboratory into real-life applications since last decade. In China, BAT (IT giants: Baidu, Alibaba, and Tencent) are the first enterprises who adopted big data into their infrastructures and then use data into business support and other usages. Not only giant IT companies can use big data for their decision making, other enterprises might also need big data to support their operation. Based on the business demand, big data solution providers like SensorsData and GrowingIO emerged.

SensorsData was founded in 2015, and its CEO SANG Wenfeng(桑文锋), was the ex-Baidu tech manager who led the construction of Baidu user’s database. Sang Wenfeng insists in data-orientation and so does SensorsData. SensorsData is a SaaS provider, and its product can be customized depending on clients’ characteristics. Beyond, privatized SaaS is a selling point of SensorsData since some companies are unwilling to expose their real data to third-party platforms. SensorsData can integrate its products with client’s own database, EMP and other in-use systems and hence make itself distinguished. Indeed, making universal SaaS product is a dream for a lot of developers, but the landing and compatibility decide whether the products will be accepted by market and functioned as expected. SaaS should take client’s thoughts into consideration in developing status.

Connecting to enterprise and solidifying its data infrastructure are the most important thing for a SaaS data solution provider. Instead of told by the top about what kind of data is needed, the product should be able to collect, organize and reflect the data that should be paid attention to. The bottom-to-top thinking is the essence for SaaS products. SaaS should not be limited to elevating efficiency, but to provide assistance in decision making from the data perspective. Hence, data-driven could be realized in the real economy and benefit millions of enterprises. How data converges to business intelligence is the critical question for most SaaS providers, and SensorsData is the best candidate to answer the question by far in China.

According to SensorsData, privatized products takes 73% of the business while the rest 27% is general SaaS. For such a great difference in SaaS product types, SensorsData might not be able to make its own un-privatized product a big name, like the Windows for Microsoft and the PhotoShop for Adobe. Customers’ appetite indicates the trend and there is no fault in following the trend. But for a SaaS product producer, while adapting to the market, it should also think about changing the market through its products in some way that could be accepted, not too mildly or it finally makes no change, nor too violently or it will be rejected at once.

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