Industry pioneer Zylo reaches 5-year mark as SaaS management goes mainstream
A little more than five years ago, Eric Christopher, Ryan Carroll, Cory Wheeler and Ben Pippenger took an idea to High Alpha’s new venture studio. They noticed the proliferation of software as a service (SaaS) subscriptions happening at organizations—lots of SaaS applications were being purchased by business units and employees, with seemingly no one keeping track of them, their use or their cost.
It got the foursome wondering about the duplication of software tools across companies. How much corporate money was being wasted by inefficient buying, redundant applications and unused licenses?
As it turns out—it’s a lot. And, with the support of High Alpha, the four founders created and launched Zylo, five years ago last month.
In doing so, they invented the SaaS Management market, inspired a plethora of competitors and spawned a new job classification: SaaS Managers, who are responsible for discovering, optimizing, managing and governing an organization’s SaaS portfolio.
“What was once a new idea is now a critical business need for senior leadership in IT and finance and recognized by industry analysts like Forrester and Gartner,” Eric Christopher said. “It’s hard to believe it’s been five years since we started to rally around the concept.”
Today, Zylo manages more than $5 billion in SaaS spending for 150 enterprise clients like Nike, Slack, Adobe, and Salesforce, along with some of the largest, most recognized and tech-forward brands in the world, like Eli Lilly and Company and the state of Indiana.
From its initial team of four, Zylo has grown to more than 80 employees and plans to increase its team by 50% in 2021. Those interested in joining Zylo should start with its open positions site and/or the TechPoint Job Board.
The company plans to expand its office space this summer, even as it embraces a hybrid work environment. The new office space will be used for in-person collaboration. Since 2016, Zylo has raised more than $35 million in venture capital and earlier this month, was brought into the $50 million Coupa Ventures fund.
“It’s definitely been exciting to create and grow this company, but we see even more promise to come,” Eric said. “As the SaaS market continues to grow, the need for SaaS management only becomes more acute. Our Discovery methodology and patented matching model are best-in-breed and enable complete visibility of SaaS purchases. And on top of that we’re providing the insights and workflows to easily optimize subscriptions, proactively manage renewals and enable the proper governance and compliance an organization needs.”
Zylo’s not the only thing growing in the tech world. The SaaS industry is accelerating and is projected to grow by $99.99 billion throughout the next four years. Zylo leaders believe growth in the SaaS industry will propel increased business for SaaS management, and they intend to maintain their status as the biggest player in that market.
“We founded Zylo knowing we had a solution to a problem most companies didn’t even know they had,” said co-founder Ben Pippenger. “That concept has been proven true countless times now. We’ve helped our customers save millions of dollars, uncover applications they didn’t even realize they had purchased and really capitalize upon their SaaS investments.
“And while we’ve accomplished a lot in the past five years – we’re really just getting started,” continued Ben. “We continue to develop and deliver new innovation, finding more ways to help our customers discover, manage and govern their SaaS. We’ve rolled out three massive product innovations just this year. The SaaS management space is hot and the best is yet to come.”