RightNow Technologies Files for $60 Million IPO

The company, which markets an online customer relationship management software service, filed registration papers for the initial public offering.

RightNow Technologies, which markets an online customer relationship management software service, filed registration papers Monday for an initial public offering with a preliminary maximum value of $60 million.

RightNow Technologies Inc., based in Bozeman, Mont., reported its first profit of $162,000 in the first quarter that ended March 31, according to the companys S-1 IPO registration statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

But RightNow CEO Greg Gianforte said Monday that the company has been "cashflow positive" for the past two years.

The company, which was organized seven years ago, has accumulated a deficit of $44.4 million and reported net losses of $4.1 million in 2003, $2.7 million in 2002 and $15.3 million in 2001, according to RightNows S-1 filing.

The S-1 didnt include an estimated share price for the IPO, which RightNow will issue on the Nasdaq National Market under the symbol RNOW. But the number of shares in the market after the IPO will be based on 22,429,715 common shares that were outstanding as of March 31.

Along with a number of other CRM software companies, RightNow enables customers to access its software via the Internet rather than installing it at the customers headquarters.

About 85 percent of RightNows customers access the applications via the online subscription service, Gianforte said. The remainder run the software onsite.

Four years ago, about half of RightNows customers chose the online service, while the other half installed the software onsite, Gianforte said.

/zimages/1/28571.gifClick here to read about why CRM vendors are shifting to online application services.

International Data Corp. has estimated that sales of online subscription licenses for all types of enterprise software will grow by more than 41 percent each year through 2007.

"We have continued to see the adoption of this on-demand model as our business continues to grow," Gianforte said "We see fully half of our revenue coming out of corporations with more than $1 billion of revenue," he said.

This is a shift from RightNows earlier years, when most of its business came from midmarket customers. "We have seen a shift from the midmarket to businesses of all sizes," he said.

International sales and sales to government agencies are the two fastest-growing segments of RightNows business, he said. "We are seeing a significant additional business with existing customers–so we are doing something right," Gianforte said.

Government agencies are using CRM applications to make information more accessible to citizens, according to Gianforte. "For example, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the Social Security Administration use RightNow to answer questions about benefit services," Gianforte said. "The Air Force Personnel Center uses RightNow to answer questions" from service members and their families, he said.

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John Pallatto

John Pallatto

John Pallatto has been editor in chief of QuinStreet Inc.'s eWEEK.com since October 2012. He has more than 40 years of experience as a professional journalist working at a daily newspaper and...