Jason Del Rey

Recent Posts by Jason Del Rey

Zuora Lands $50 Million Series E on Back of “Subscription Economy”

Tien Tzuo

In Zuora CEO Tien Tzuo’s worldview, just about any service or product that would make sense to be sold as part of a subscription business model, should be. And the rise in popularity of subscription offerings in the software, commerce and digital-media categories are just the beginning of a broader change that will soon shape many other industries.

Tzuo’s pitch is self-serving, of course, but investors seem to like it; it has helped Zuora, which makes a billing platform to help software, media and telecom companies manage subscriptions, raise a fresh investment round of $50 million.

“It isn’t just about taking HR and procurement and moving it to the cloud,” said Tzuo, one of Salesforce.com’s earliest employees. “It’s about a fundamental change in consumer behavior — companies and people wanting to subscribe.”

Paul Allen’s Vulcan Capital, Northgate and Next World Capital all participated. A long list of current investors, which includes Shasta Ventures, Benchmark Capital and Marc Benioff, also contributed in the round.

Zuora is seeing annual revenue in the mid-eight-figure range, according to Tzuo, from a client base that includes Box, DocuSign and Dell.

The company has now raised more than $132 million.

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik