Jive Software made a splash last year with its IPO, becoming the first of the new Silicon Valley enterprise darlings to go public.
But one of Jive’s main competitors, Moxie Software, has a little news of its own: it will be profitable by the end of 2012, according to CEO Tom Kelly.
In its filing, Jive warned that it does not expect to be profitable for the “foreseeable future,” so Moxie’s promise is like throwing down the guantlet.
Kelly also spared no love for other competitors in the fast-growing enterprise collaboration space, like Yammer and Salesforce.com, which last year introduced its Chatter app for communication.
“After all the Yammering, Chattering, and Jive talk going on, success will come down to connecting internal collaboration platforms into doing someting very concrete and very specific,” Kelly told us.
Kelly says that Moxie and Jive started from different positions — Jive was originally used to set up public forums, while Moxie focused on internal communications first. Now, the companies are coming into competition with each other, but Kelly thinks Moxie has the edge because it understands that companies need to interact with customers in lots of ways — not just in public forums.
“A large financial services organisation, and we’ve got many of those, do not necessarily want their customers sitting together in a community discussing how to solve one another’s problems.” Moxie can let companies provide answers to their customers through a “chat session, email system, or in a combined chat-cobrowsing environment.”
Moxie is also adding a document storage and sharing feature that could bring it into competition with document collaboration companies like Box and Dropbox.
“The primary reason is not for storage. The primary reason is ease of use for our customers working together in that environment. As a side effect, do we become a storage play as well?”
Then there’s Microsoft SharePoint, which Box has identified as enemy number one — or at least ripe for the plucking because users hate it so much.
Kelly doesn’t think it’s a threat.
“Have you ever used SharePoint for collaboration?” he joked.
“I always tell my sales team, if you go into an account and SharePoint is identified as one of the alternatives they are reviewing, and IT is leading the discussion with SharePoint, and user groups are not playing a key role in that discussion, that is a very bad sign. That’s an organisation operating on the the old adage where IT says ‘here is a solution, you use it because I told you so.’ Those types of environments are on a downward trend.”
In fact, Kelly thinks Moxie can add value by integrating with SharePoint, which a lot of enterprises use for simple document storage. “I don’t view Microsoft as the enemy at all.”