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Case Study: SaaS for SMBs  [ Computer Technology Review ]
August 14, 2008 10:45 PM
Thursday, 14 August 2008 11:46 InfoStreet

A serial entrepreneur of successful businesses
relies on a series of SaaS applications to power his growing portfolio

Venture Capitalist Adi McAbian has a proven track record for creating, growing and selling successful businesses.  He attributes much of his success to his single-minded devotion to following through with an idea and knowing what business tools can aid in growing that idea.  “Inspiration for a new business can hit you at any moment,” says McAbian.  “The secret lies in being able to harness that idea and quickly bring it to fruition in a cost-effective manner.”  To accomplish this, McAbian is a longtime devotee of the web-delivered (also called Software-as-a-Service or SaaS) model for quickly and easily building a company’s infrastructure.  To-date, McAbian has built over a dozen successful companies, all of which were built upon the StreetSmart information technology (IT) platform – developed by Tarzana-based company, InfoStreet.  StreetSmart provided the IT infrastructure to power McAbian’s prolific business savvy, offering such tools as: custom IMAP email, file sharing, portal creation, CRM, address book, calendaring, workflow, synching tools and more.

“Many budding entrepreneurs get too caught up with the massive amount of detail involved in creating a burgeoning company’s infrastructure, rather than focusing on the business itself,” explains Adi McAbian, managing director of TwistBox, board member of the Internet Task Force of Boston and creator of a dozen other successful businesses.  “I advocate outsourcing the basics to those that specialize in this.  To be successful in this tough economic climate, you need to focus 100-percent of your attention on your business model and customers.”

Case in point, McAbian explains that TwistBox, a global producer and publisher of mobile content with 180 employees currently, was founded, and up and running within two-hours by using StreetSmart.  “With StreetSmart, we were literally up and running with our TwistBox-branded email and everything, in a matter of hours,” says McAbian.  “And the best part was that we now had a sophisticated backbone upon which to build our business for less than most people spend on coffee in a month.”

Starting a new company involves tremendous amounts of data – and TwistBox was no exception.   Whether it was with sales people, designers, lawyers or web developers – TwistBox became dependent on StreetSmart’s file sharing capabilities as their primary medium for sharing information that was too large to be sent via standard email.  In addition, in order to quickly and most effectively train their new sales and support staff, McAbian made use of StreetSmart’s powerful portal technology to both educate and motivate the new team.

McAbian elaborates, “When I first started building companies, I looked far and wide at the various options out there and found that there is no better choice today in the marketplace than InfoStreet’s StreetSmart. When you compare service and cost  InfoStreet is the perfect solution for mid-to-small sized businesses that want the capabilities of a big firm, but don’t have excess capital to just spend, spend, spend.  You would have to dedicate large sums to most other offerings to get the type of services that StreetSmart offers us today – all from one Web-based platform.”

InfoStreet’s applications allow McAbian, and other entrepreneurs, to get to market more quickly, without having to hire an IT-consultant or buy expensive hardware and software.  McAbian estimates a 30-percent increase in business since the implementation, mainly because he is able to jump ahead to just focus- on running the business, instead of on building, managing and maintaining IT infrastructure.  For McAbian, InfoStreet’s “IT in a box” will be part of any business he focuses on next.