Zendesk, which specializes in a SaaS-based help desk system, has attracted $6 million in B round funding from Benchmark Capital and Charles River Partners. Also, Zendesk is tweaking its software to serve (A) independent consultants and home-based businesses and (B) larger companies with stricter governance requirements. Here's the scoop.
First, thanks to Nick Vossburg, president of Alteritech Inc., a managed service provider in Vienna, Va. Nick was kind enough to send me a tip about the Zendesk financial news.
According to TechCrunch:
[Zendesk] offers Web-based help desk services for companies to offer support to their customers. It is an online ticketing system for customer support, which ranges in price from $9 to $39 per support agent per month, after a one-month free trial. Corporate customers include Rackspace, Condé Nast, Twitter, MSNBC and Scribd.Zendesk is the latest in a growing list of SaaS-driven companies moving into the help desk and managed services markets. Also, the company's decision to focus on smaller IT consultants reminds me a bit of the Autotask Go! strategy launched in September 2007.
I am not suggesting that all MSP software will shift to a cloud model. But we are seeing a blending of SaaS ticketing systems with corporate IT systems. Plus, GFI Software's recent buyout of HoundDog Technology and ZenDesk's ability to attract venture money shows growing interest in turnkey SaaS solutions.
Large software companies also are planning SaaS-oriented administration tools. Microsoft, for instance, in late 2009 plans to test System Center Online Desktop Manager -- a SaaS tool for PC and notebook management.
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