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Meta SaaS Lands $1.5M in Seed Funding

AUSTIN, TX, Meta SaaS has closed a $1.5 million seed round led by Mark Cuban.
Meta SaaS, which provides technology that helps companies save money by better managing and utilizing their software as a service (SaaS) subscriptions, announced today it has closed a $1.5 million seed round led by Mark Cuban with participation from Barracuda Networks and other individual investors including and Bazaarvoice Founder Brett Hurt.

"SaaS has solved numerous business problems, but it has also created a whole fresh set of pitfalls that can cost companies tens of millions of dollars annually," said Arlo Gilbert, CEO and co-founder of Meta SaaS. "The traditional method of tracking SaaS subscriptions and contracts via spreadsheet (if at all) isn't going to cut it. In many cases, companies have absolutely no idea how many SaaS applications they're paying for or using."

"We're generating and processing more data than ever due to the likes of artificial intelligence, machine vision and deep learning," said Mark Cuban, highly successful entrepreneur, investor and Meta SaaS advisor. "That tidal wave of data has been inextricably tied to an explosion of SaaS vendors supporting the industries advancing these complex technologies. Meta SaaS has an incredible opportunity to navigate those costly vendor waters and save companies serious money."

At its core, Meta SaaS helps companies discover and address the 31 percent of SaaS licenses that are either underutilized or have been abandoned completely.1 Customers stand to save significant money through a mix of abandoned or redundant licenses that can be cut instantly and those which can be consolidated or renegotiated when a contract comes up for renewal. Recently, Gartner spotlighted the critical importance of a focus on cost savings in software asset management and SaaS contract renewal.

With SaaS, it's particularly easy for companies to get trapped into auto-renewals that they don't need for licenses that aren't used. Compounding that issue, procurement departments universally grapple with managing renewals and vendor negotiations, IT is constantly concerned about access to and governance of applications, and finance cannot track where company money is being spent on SaaS. Meta SaaS benefits all parties by leveraging more than 200 pre-built integrations with major SaaS vendors to monitor login and usage data. That vendor utilization, employee activity and contract timeline data is then interpreted into actionable insights showing how much money can be saved and when, all delivered through a simple-to-use, polished online dashboard.

Onboarding to Meta SaaS takes less than an hour and merely requires the customer to provide contract and renewal information, along with permissions for Meta SaaS to plug into and draw usage data from SaaS vendor accounts. Unlike other SaaS management tools, Meta SaaS can also discover applications being used through directory services such as Microsoft Azure Active Directory, HR platforms such as Namely and Workday, financial systems such as Expensify or enterprise resource planning (ERP) software such as Intacct. This allows companies to get a more complete picture of what applications are in use and by whom.

For applications that are identified as underutilized, business leaders can know to make employees aware of existing tools available to them and offer training to help them make the most of the company's SaaS investments. Additionally, when an employee leaves the company, Meta SaaS can flag the vacated SaaS license to the IT team, let them know to cut off the former employee's access to applications that could otherwise become a security hazard, and give IT the opportunity to reassign the license.

Meta SaaS, started in 2016, will use the seed funding to fast-track further SaaS management product development, hire full-time software engineers and scale up its sales and marketing functions. Gilbert and CTO Scott Hertel co-founded the company after Gilbert realized what a money pit SaaS can be while bootstrapping and rapidly growing both iCall, the first VoIP provider for iPhone (acquired in 2012) as well as affiliate marketing powerhouse Click Feel Media.

To date, Meta SaaS has signed on clients including RetailMeNot, Spredfast, Indeed, BenefitMall and Civitas Learning.

"As a global, publicly traded company with employees across multiple business units and geographies, we've witnessed the SaaS licensing boom firsthand," said Michael Perone, founder, EVP & CMO of Barracuda Networks. "Meta SaaS helps solve a real problem that businesses face in managing numerous SaaS applications and contracts across multiple vendors. Meta SaaS simplifies that process with a transparency that helps companies save money and optimize their SaaS spend, and we look forward to working with them."

Additional investors in the round include Capital Factory, where Meta SaaS was incubated in its accelerator program, and Dallas early stage venture capital fund Deep Space Ventures.

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About Meta SaaS

Meta SaaS was founded on the belief that SaaS should be a driver of business success, not a financial and management burden. Meta SaaS saves companies money by giving procurement, IT and finance teams unprecedented visibility into which application licenses are actually being used and by whom. The result is a single source of truth for available applications and licenses, the power to negotiate more favorable subscriptions and no more contract renewal surprises.
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