Every year, Parallels releases a report about the small business market (SMB) to show its customers some possible directions to take their businesses. This year at Parallels Summit, its annual conference for hosting and services providers, the report is dominated by the cloud.
According to Parallels:
- The 2012 cloud services market has grown to $45 billion as about 6 million SMBs entered the cloud market for the first time last year. The global market will continue to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 28 percent through 2015 to a forecasted $95 billion.
- Infrastructure as a Service will represent $31.3 billion of the total market; web apps and overall web presence represents $16.3 billion; collaboration and hosted communications $14.3 billion and business apps $33.8 billion.
- In the United States, the SMB cloud market is now $18.9 billion and is forecast to grow 19 percent through 2015. This growth is driven by SaaS applications, which saw 60 percent growth in 2012.
- Reflecting the general market, 50 percent of small businesses will have a mobile web site by 2015.
- SMBs used four cloud services on average in 2012, up from 1 in 2009. That number will grow to 7 cloud services by 2015.
- Web apps are growing three times faster than web hosting in mature markets.
- Over 50 percent of SMBs would pay more to have servers with unlimited storage.
Parallels also used the conference to discuss its version of a cloud marketplace and a new cloud storage offering. I will get deeper into the state of the cloud marketplace in a Google Hangout that I am co-moderating today with Krishnan Subramanian of Rishidot Research. We’ll have Parallels executives there, as well as representatives from the hosting world.
The small business market is expanding but it is still a question how Parallels will compete. The company is heavily marketing its cloud marketplace but the proof of its success is still a question mark. This is a market with major players such as AWS and companies like Standing Cloud and Bitnami, which have made their mark by packaging apps. Bitnami recently helped Microsoft Open Technologies, a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft, with the launch of VM Depot, “a community-driven catalog of open source virtual machine images for Windows Azure.”