In 2003, having installed its software in 25 Direct Sales companies, FourFront offered a Managed Service solution for the first time. This meant that customers now had the choice of either running the software using its own staff, or using FourFront’s staff in a bureau capacity.
It meant that instead of buying a licence outright, they could rent the software. Whilst the reasoning behind the introduction of this service was to be able to cater for start up companies who perhaps didn’t have the up-front capital to invest in a software licence and staff, ironically FourFront’s first customer was worldwide isp giant Tiscali where this certainly wasn’t the case. 888.com, FourFront’s biggest and fastest growing customer to date in terms of distributor take on and commission payout over the first six months, followed suit and also took advantage of this service.
The rationale for these companies was not so much spreading the payment to run parallel with growing sales, but to be able to build a business plan which had a fixed monthly cost for software services with little or no internal staff costs.