MasterCard this week clarified that they will not require SaaS and subscription software merchants to request re-authorization from customers before automatically charging recurring payments once a free trial has ended. MasterCard’s original announcement called into question whether the new policy would apply to SaaS subscriptions, but the credit card giant later updated the release to indicate that this policy will apply to merchants of physical products only. Subscription retail merchants will have to notify customers via text or email stating the subscription cost, payment date and merchant name, upon the free trial ending. This authorization will be necessary even for companies which require users to opt-in to recurring charges upon free trial signup.
In trending SaaS news this week is SaaS Mag, the leading print and digital publication in the space, which has published an Assessment of the Health of the Asia Pacific (APAC) SaaS Market. The APAC SaaS market is currently on track to reach $4.4 billion by the end of this year on its own and represents a significant customer base for SaaS companies. The post explores drivers of growth in the region and the different strengths of its leading countries. Make sure to take a read if you are thinking about expanding operations to or want to learn more about considerations in the APAC SaaS market!
The cloud computing world saw AWS launch Backup, a platform function that allows developers to back up data from cloud-stored projects as well as on-premises services. The tool offers backup for Amazon EBS volumes, RDS databases, DynamoDB tables, EFS file systems and AWS Storage Gateway volumes; on-premises data can be backed up using the AWS Storage Gateway. Pricing for Backup matches the current Snapshot service, with exceptions like a per-GB fee for restoring data from EFS file systems and DynamoDB backups.
New in SaaS business listings this week we have a $265K B2B business intelligence software business, with years of operational history, leading to an authoritative and well-known brand in a rapidly growing niche, software built by a team of world-class designers and developers, allowing for a robust and highly scalable product, lean and simple cost structure allowing for continuously high net margins of c.75% in the LTM, significant brand authority and exposure with exclusive features in notable publications and developer transitioning with the business post-sale.
New in digital services business listings this week we have a $733K SEO and content marketing business, with productized service offering consistent and repeatable results and a scalable business model, continuous YoY growth with revenues reaching a c.41% CAGR for the period 2016 to 2018, well-trained and autonomous team capable of running the day-to-day staying on post sale, product market fit with high customer repeat rates and growing recurring revenues and years of operational history allowing for a strong brand and organic search presence.
New in affiliate business listings this week we have a $448K cooking guides and kitchenware business, with impressive revenue CMGR of c.22% over the past year, robust c.67K keyword profile with backlinks from authoritative sites allowing for a dominant organic search presence, c.1,500 posts to-date with a c.77% growth in user sessions in the LTM, lean and scalable cost structure driving high net margin of c.82% in the LTM and low owner involvement creating plenty of time to invest in growth.
Featured in e-commerce listings this week we have a $316K print-on-demand design automation business, with design automation scripts to create tens of thousands of unique designs, diversified sales with income generated across Amazon FBA, Amazon Merch and Teespring and other platforms, 36,000 tier Amazon Merch account and branded website with growing traffic offering clear opportunity for expansion. If you are interested any of the above businesses, please follow the link to request a prospectus.
In events news, FE International is extending a 10% discount to clients and subscribers for LTV Conf, coming April 3-4, 2019 to New York City! Use code FEINTERNATIONAL10 at checkout to purchase Early Bird Tickets (currently 75% off full price) at the lowest they will ever be until January 28. Discounts are offered to bigger groups, so make sure to bring your team. Up to 400 invited SaaS Founders, Executives and Investors from private and public companies will be in attendance making this the perfect place to learn and make new connections.
-Nathan Barry, Founder and CEO of ConvertKit
-Dan Martell, Angel Investor, exited SaaS entrepreneur and Chief Instigator at SaaS Academy
-David Hauser, Founder of Grasshopper and Chargify
-April Dunford, Executive Consultant for Market Strategy and Product Positioning
-Claire Suellentrop, Co-Founder of Forget the Funnel and customer feedback expert
-Lauren Foundos, Founder and CEO of FORTË
…plus more added every week!
Founder Thomas Smale is also looking forward to CapCon2019 on January 21-23 where he will join fellow entrepreneurs in learning about the biggest business trends in the coming year. If you are planning on attending or will be in the Dallas area, reply to this email to set up a meeting!
Continue reading below for more on MasterCard’s clarified subscription announcement and AWS’s launch of Backup.
Years of operational history with an authoritative, well-known brand in a rapidly growing niche
• Software built by world-class designers & developers, allowing for a highly scalable product
• Lean, simple cost structure allowing for continuously high net margins of c.75% in the LTM
• Significant brand authority and exposure with exclusive features in notable publications
• Developer transitioning with the business post-sale
Yearly net profit: $73,000
Asking price: $265,000
Productized service offering consistent and repeatable results and a scalable business model
• Continuous YoY growth with revenues reaching a c.41% CAGR for the period 2016 to 2018
• Well-trained and autonomous team capable of running the day-to-day staying on post sale
• Product market fit with high customer repeat rates and growing recurring revenues
• Years of operational history allowing for a strong brand and organic search presence
Yearly net profit: $256,000
Asking price: $733,000
Affiliate – Cooking Guides & Kitchenware – $14K gross/mo
Impressive revenue CMGR of c.22% over the past year
• c.67K keyword rankings with authoritative backlinks and a dominant organic search presence
• c.1,500 posts to-date with a c.77% growth in user sessions in the LTM
• Lean and scalable cost structure driving high net margin of c.82% in the LTM
• Low owner involvement creating plenty of time to invest in growth
Yearly net profit: $150,000
Asking price: $448,000
Revenues growing at a 26% CAGR for the period 2016 to (e)2018
• Highly scalable business using design automation scripts to create tens of thousands of unique designs
• Diversified sales across Amazon FBA, Amazon Merch and Teespring, along with others
• 36,000 tier Amazon Merch account
• Branded website with growing traffic offering clear opportunity for expansion
Yearly net profit: $113,000
Asking price: $316,000
Affiliate – Home Appliances – $1.5K gross/mo
In The News…
MasterCard Requires User Authorization for Recurring Payments
Following confusion over SaaS subscription payments, MasterCard has issued clarification around a new policy requiring authorization from users before enacting recurring payments after a free trial has ended.
In the original announcement, MasterCard had stated that they wanted their cardholders to feel content with their transactions once a free trial has ended, and so would begin requiring merchants to notify and request authorization from customers before enacting a recurring subscription. Essentially, when users sign up for a free trial using a MasterCard, the merchant will notify them when the free trial has ended and another payment will have to be made in order to trigger the subscription; it will not automatically enroll. The notification message must include the subscription cost, payment date and store name, along with instructions on how to cancel. Merchants should note that even if they have created an opt-in for the subscription upon signing up, the double opt-in will still apply to MasterCard users.
MasterCard later clarified that this double opt-in process will only apply to physical products, quelling confusion over possible limits to subscription and software recurring payments.
AWS Launches Backup for Cloud and On-Site Data
Amazon Web Services has this week launched Backup, a function on the platform allowing developers to back up projects and data from AWS services as well as the on-premises apps.
The tool helps developers set up backup policies for Amazon EBS volumes, RDS databases, DynamoDB tables, EFS file systems and AWS Storage Gateway volumes as well as other services. The scope of functionality is currently contained to a user’s particular AWS region, though cross-region functionality is slated to be added later this year along with support for additional AWS services as well. The AWS Storage Gateway allows businesses to back up on-premises services. Default settings have data stored in Amazon S3 buckets, though Backup offers the ability for users to create an array of backup parameters and retention periods, such as the ability to shift backups of EFS data to cold storage or completely delete data after a certain time period has elapsed. Most services already have the Snapshots capability, and since Backup mostly automates snapshots and sets parameters around them, pricing is the same for Backup as it is for using snapshot features on the platform (excluding file system backup which is prices per-GB). The per-GB pricing scheme also applies to EFS file systems data restoration and DynamoDB backups.
Backup is now available to all developers on the platform.