IBM: LotusLive paying subscribers go from 0 to 18 million in a year

This grabbed my attention this morning!

ZDnet report:

IBM has 18 million paying client seats for its LotusLive cloud services, a jump that will result in a few double takes among IT industry watchers.

That LotusLive tally at the beginning of the year was nil so the growth is stunning. I double checked with IBM to make sure that those 18 million client seats were actually paying with a price of more than zero. I was told there are no asterisks here.

Now IBM isn’t forking over revenue data on LotusLive cloud services. Customers pay anywhere from $3 a month to $79 a month depending on the service. IBM recently launched iNotes to go after Gmail in the enterprise, but its range of services competes with everything from Microsoft Office to Cisco’s WebEx.

Assuming all 18 million seats are paying $3 a month [the lowest list price monthly subscription – for LotusLive iNotes] LotusLive could be bringing in and it’s $648 million a year. If there’s a higher blended price IBM’s cloud services could dwarf the annual revenue of Salesforce.com.

Whilst I’m sure these figures need further investigation, they suggest that LotusLive has had a massive first 8 months or so in the marketplace, and fully justifies IBM/Lotus’ jump into this space!

Stuart McIntyre is a Senior Strategist at Fostering Community Limited. He curates a number of product-focused news sites, is a lapsed podcaster, founded the Social Connections user group and regularly speaks at conferences and events. This blog represents his own slightly-eccentric and usually-controversial opinions!