On the heels of recent news that MarketLive will end support for version 4 and prior, the company announced today it has closed a new round of financing and added two new investors. According to the press release, “JAFCO Ventures and Northgate Capital, join existing investors, Sequoia Capital, Sigma Partners, Globespan Capital, and others, who all fully participated in the round,” which amounts to $20M in new capital.
Rumors had been swirling around that MarketLive had been putting out feelers for a sale. Today’s news sharply curbs that speculation.
Speaking briefly with Gartner last week, Gene Alvarez told me MarketLive’s decision to jettison the older versions is “customary for software companies” and essential to the company’s future. While this may be true, it’s no consolation to nearly half of their clients — many who launched on v.4 in the last 18 months after an arduous, expensive integration. Now they must start all over.
Perhaps MarketLive will follow the lead of other SaaS vendors, and invest capital to reduce the cost and complexity of upgrades. In April, MarketLive CEO Terry Austin said that improving upgrades was indeed part of the plan. While admitting that migration is expensive, he asserts it is still more affordable than transitioning to a competitor.