IRIS: Head in the Cloud, but feet on the ground
Last year, IRIS bought itself a place at the Cloud Computing table with the acquisition of PROJECTminder. John Stokdyk looks at what the deal means for the group’s wider Cloud strategy.
One way to that’s guaranteed to wind up IRIS Group executives is to suggest they’re trying to replicate the growth-through-acquisition strategy that has proved to so profitable for accountancy’s software market leader, Sage.
IRIS managers devote hours to explaining how their business model differs from Sage, but when it comes to Cloud Computing market, the contrast could not be more marked.
For several years now, Sage has tied itself in knots coming trying to develop offerings for the fast-growing web-based software without jeopardising the user base and profitability of its desktop accounting cash cows, Sage 50 and Sage Instant. The aborted SageLive beta test earlier this year shows just how difficult that balancing act can be.
IRIS took a much more straightforward approach. Having taken some tentative steps to build a Cloud application in -house - does anyone remember IRIS Accounts Office Online? - IRIS went out and bought the Brighton-based Cloud developer PROJECTminder last year.
AccountingWEB recently met IRIS Group marketing director David Pinches and the PROJECTminder team to find out how the acquisition was progressing within IRIS, and what impact it was likely to have on the company’s wider online applications strategy.