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AppDirect Report Shows One in Five Top Companies Operate App Marketplaces

November 11, 2013

Analysis Reveals Marketplaces are the Fortune 500’s Preferred Channel for App Distribution

San Francisco, CA, November 12, 2013 – AppDirect, the leading cloud service marketplace and management company, today released its inaugural Fortune 500 App Report, providing a fresh perspective on factors influencing enterprise application development and distribution. The report reveals that a sizable number of the nation’s top companies, almost 20 percent, are making app marketplaces a critical part of their business strategy. Other key findings illustrate that nearly every Fortune 500 company (99 percent) that offers apps distributes them via one or more marketplaces, with a primary focus (72 percent) on SMB and consumer audiences. The report also reveals that there is wide variation in how Fortune 500 companies define “marketplace,” with more than a third of app stores lacking key features that make marketplaces ideal for delivering software and services.

“Sometimes large companies can be slow to adopt new technologies, but the Fortune 500 are jumping into the app economy headfirst. Not only do the majority of Fortune 500 companies offer apps of some type, but they overwhelmingly turn to application marketplaces to distribute them to end users. In fact, almost 20 percent of the top companies in the U.S. operate their own app marketplaces,” said Daniel Saks, Co-CEO of AppDirect. “Clearly, today’s enterprises recognize that marketplaces are an ideal way to build ecosystems around software that make these solutions far easier to use and benefit users, developers, and channels alike.”

SaaS(ier) than Mobile: Third-Party SaaS Apps Outpace Mobile Apps
Mobile apps have traditionally dominated overall app offerings, in large part because Apple and Google have made the distribution process fast and easy. However, the times are changing and now a quarter of the apps offered by the Fortune 100 are SaaS applications. The rise of SaaS apps is particularly strong in the third-party app market. One in five Fortune 100 companies sell third-party apps and within that group, SaaS apps (75 percent) outpace their mobile (70 percent) counterparts. The rise of SaaS may be attributed to the fact that these apps can be an opportunity for long-term sales revenue (monthly subscription) versus the one-off purchase typical of mobile apps.

A Market for Growth: Many “App Stores” Lack Full Marketplace Experience
While application marketplaces are the primary distribution strategy for Fortune 500 companies that offer apps, there is significant room for improvement. More than one-third of these app marketplaces (37 percent) do not offer a full, robust marketplace experience that provides key features such as billing and identity management. Today’s savvy customers demand a sophisticated, user-friendly marketplace experience. To meet these expectations, enterprises should ensure their marketplaces include identity management, billing, provisioning, and other advanced features.

App Store Early Adopters: Tech and Telco Lead the Way, Aerospace and Defense Beat Healthcare and Finance to the Punch
The technology and telecommunications industries lead the Fortune 500 in offering applications. Ninety-seven percent of tech companies and 89 percent of telco companies offer apps, with financial services at 83 percent. Eighty percent of insurance, transportation and aerospace/defense also offer apps.

Similarly, tech and telco operate the majority of app marketplaces (43 and 42 percent, respectively). Aerospace/defense placed a strong third with 22 percent operating their own app stores.

Another area in which aerospace/defense shows well is in third-party apps, offered by 33 percent. Interestingly, telco takes the lead from tech in this area with 53 percent offering third-party apps versus 47 percent of tech companies.

Despite the attention on healthcare technology and demand for health marketplace services driven by the Affordable Care Act, only seven percent of healthcare companies in the Fortune 500 operate app marketplaces. Financial services and energy industries rank at the bottom of the list in utilizing app marketplaces.

About AppDirect
AppDirect is the leading cloud service marketplace and management company dedicated to revolutionizing the way businesses run. Its award-winning platform connects businesses, brands, and developers through a global network of partner marketplaces. Based in San Francisco, AppDirect powers the marketplaces of trusted companies around the globe—including Staples, Deutsche Telekom, TeliaSonera, Rackspace, Swisscom, Appcelerator, and more—and has helped millions of businesses discover, buy, and manage the best cloud-based software and services.

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