The story of how cSubs, a relatively small, woman-owned software company in Montvale, won business from a company as large as ADP is straight out of a Business Development 101 textbook.
It saw a need most other companies didn’t even recognize was there.
“We help other businesses manage all the information resources that they consume,” Chief Technology Officer Ken Redler said. “This is one of those areas that is typically poorly managed or doesn’t get much attention, even in very large companies or companies that spend tens of millions of dollars a year on information resources.”
It’s the basis for cSubs, a web-based software company that helps companies manage their information and, ultimately, saves them money.
“Some (companies) don’t have any awareness of what they’re spending or how they’re spending it,” Redler said. “So, we have a service that companies can use that help them get their arms around the procurement, use and renewal of all their information resources.”
As both automation and Big Data become a larger part of business operations, Redler said cSubs’ software has gained even higher demand.
“We’ll go talk to large companies and ask them what they spend on their licenses, contracts, market data and feeds,” Redler said. “They’ll say, ‘Well, somewhere between $13 million and $20 million.
“So, there is a massive amount of slop in their spend, to the tune of millions.”
Even though cSubs is technically a software company, it will operate as a consultant as well in order to minimize that “slop” for a company.
“If we can go in and find one thing they don’t need, instantly it’s a million dollars to their bottom line,” Redler said. “It’s usually not quite that simple, but if you imagine a company that consumes 1,000 contracts, licenses and all these other things per year, it’s easy to imagine there’s a lot of duplication.
“And if it’s a company that has branches in seven different countries, all of whom have their own independent research departments, they’re duplicating and buying the same thing twice.”
cSubs’ solution allows employees of these companies to access the software through their web browser and enter data. That information is then all funneled to one place, where it can be analyzed.
Biz in brief
One last thing: cSubs, as it exists, is the second incarnation of Julie Sue Auslander’s company, which was originally founded in the 1990s. After that company was bought out and run unsuccessfully, Auslander became reinvolved and the company was reimagined as an internet-based solutions company.
“When they log in, they can see how much they’re spending, the duplications, decide when and if things should be renewed,” Redler said. “All of this put together helps the company get the most of what they’re spending and, also, spend less.”
The system also can be utilized to track procurement systems, which can range from the acquisition of simple office supplies to raw materials for manufacturing and pharmaceutical companies.
“Instead of 1,000 phone calls, orders being made and checks being written, it’s one system, and it can go through their existing procurement system like Arriba,” Redler said.
Finally, the company’s software can help mitigate liability surrounded by sharing content, according to President Julie Sue Auslander.
“(That’s) sharing content they’re not supposed to be sharing or having access to publisher information by sharing passwords and the like,” she said. “Publishers are really starting to crack down on that.”
Redler echoed the importance of that application.
“Sometimes when we’re selling, we’re selling to all different factions of the company: It could be the purchasing department, technology or even legal,” he said. “But the legal angle that Julie brings up is a big one, because you have all of this disorganized spend in all these different locations with all these people working remotely using FaceTime.
“It’s easy for people to unintentionally share materials they’re not really allowed to share because of licensing doesn’t permit it.”
Redler said publishers have become very sophisticated in response.
“They’ll say, ‘Why is there a login in Brazil when we licensed it for you in Chicago?’” he said. “Suddenly, you have a problem with that publisher, who will look to monetize unauthorized spend.
“That’s a revenue source for a lot of these publishers.”
cSubs is able to take that information through its software, analyze the privileges and assign them to specific users.
“When you log in, you only get what you’re supposed to get,” he said. “That’s the sort of risk-mitigation angle that goes with it.”
Redler said this all occurs on one system with varying features that can be turned on or customized.
Of course, cSubs’ clients won’t pay for the resources they don’t need.
Considering the aim of cSubs’ software, that customization and pay-for-what-you-need approach only makes sense.
“Different companies will represent it to their users in different ways,” he said. “Some will say, ‘Get Subscriptions’ or ‘Manage Contracts.’
“Essentially, it’s a series of web applications that are tied together in various ways to create a seamless experience for the end user.”
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