How Many SaaS companies are there in 2023? Stats to know

Tasnim Hasan
6 mins read


Software as a Service (SaaS) has emerged as a leading model for delivering software applications over the internet, revolutionizing the way businesses access and use software. In this article, we will explore the definition and history of SaaS, examine the market size and revenue growth of SaaS companies, identify the major players in the industry, discuss the opportunities available for SaaS companies in 2023, and delve into the differences between SaaS, Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS).

Additionally, we will discuss the metrics used to evaluate SaaS companies, the regional and industry distribution of SaaS companies, the types of investors involved in the SaaS sector, the amount of investment in SaaS companies, and the trends in investment. Lastly, we will explore the impact of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) on SaaS.

What is SaaS

SaaS refers to a software distribution model where applications are hosted by a provider and made available to customers over the internet. Instead of purchasing software licenses and installing the applications on their own servers, SaaS allows businesses to access and use software on a subscription basis. Users can access the software through web browsers, eliminating the need for complex installations and infrastructure maintenance.

History of SaaS

The origins of SaaS can be traced back to the concept of time-sharing systems in the 1960s and 1970s. However, the modern SaaS model gained prominence with the rise of the internet in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Salesforce, founded in 1999, is often credited as one of the pioneers of SaaS, introducing the concept of delivering Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software as a service. Since then, SaaS has grown rapidly, transforming the software industry and enabling businesses of all sizes to access powerful applications without significant upfront costs.

Market size of SaaS companies

The market for SaaS has witnessed tremendous growth over the past decade. According to market research firm Gartner, the worldwide SaaS market reached $105.3 billion in 2020, representing a 18.4% increase from the previous year. This growth can be attributed to the numerous advantages SaaS offers, including lower costs, scalability, and ease of use.

Source: Exploding Topics

Revenue growth of SaaS companies

SaaS companies have experienced impressive revenue growth due to the increasing adoption of cloud-based software solutions. Many SaaS companies operate on a subscription-based business model, which provides a recurring revenue stream. This predictable revenue model has attracted investors and allowed SaaS companies to invest in product development, marketing, and customer acquisition. In 2020, the top 50 public SaaS companies reported an average revenue growth rate of 36%, showcasing the industry's robust performance.

Source: Tomasz Tunguz

Major players in the SaaS industry

The SaaS industry is highly competitive, with numerous players vying for market share. Some of the major players in the industry include Salesforce, Microsoft, Adobe, Oracle, and SAP. These companies offer a wide range of software applications across various domains, such as CRM, human resources, finance, and marketing.

Estimated number of SaaS companies in 2023

The SaaS industry is experiencing significant growth in 2023, with a rapid expansion worldwide. Presently, there are more than 30,000 SaaS companies catering to millions of customers. Analysts predict that the SaaS market will achieve a market size of $700 billion by 2030, displaying a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.3% from 2022 to 2030.

Projected revenue growth of SaaS companies in 2023

The worldwide market for software as a service (SaaS) is projected to experience growth, with an estimated increase from $235.58 billion in 2022 to $253.62 billion in 2023, reflecting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.7%.

Opportunities for SaaS companies in 2023

In 2023, SaaS companies are poised to seize new opportunities driven by technological advancements and evolving customer needs. With the increasing digital transformation of businesses, the demand for cloud-based software solutions is expected to grow. SaaS companies can capitalize on this trend by developing innovative and industry-specific applications, expanding their global reach, and enhancing customer experience through personalized solutions and advanced integrations.

Differences between SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS

While SaaS focuses on delivering software applications over the internet, PaaS and IaaS offer different levels of cloud infrastructure and services.

PaaS provides a platform for developers to build, deploy, and manage applications without worrying about infrastructure management. IaaS, on the other hand, offers virtualized computing resources such as virtual machines and storage, allowing businesses to scale their infrastructure as needed.

Source: Liquid Web

Metrics to evaluate SaaS companies

When evaluating SaaS companies, several key metrics are considered. These include monthly recurring revenue (MRR), customer acquisition cost (CAC), churn rate, customer lifetime value (CLTV), and gross margin.

MRR reflects the stability and growth of a company's revenue stream, while CAC measures the cost of acquiring new customers. Churn rate indicates customer retention, while CLTV assesses the value generated from each customer over their lifetime. Gross margin is an important profitability metric, reflecting the efficiency of a company's operations.

SaaS companies by region

SaaS companies can be found across the globe, but certain regions have emerged as hotspots for SaaS innovation. Silicon Valley in the United States remains a prominent hub for SaaS startups and established companies. Other regions with a growing SaaS presence include Europe, particularly the United Kingdom, Germany, and France, as well as Asia Pacific, with countries like India and Australia experiencing significant growth in the SaaS sector.

SaaS companies by industry

SaaS solutions cater to a wide range of industries, including finance, healthcare, e-commerce, education, and manufacturing. Each industry has unique software requirements, leading to the development of specialized SaaS applications. For instance, in healthcare, SaaS companies provide Electronic Health Records (EHR) systems, telehealth platforms, and medical billing solutions.

Types of investors in SaaS companies

SaaS companies attract different types of investors, including venture capitalists, private equity firms, and strategic investors. Venture capitalists often invest in early-stage SaaS startups, providing funding and guidance to fuel growth.

Private equity firms typically focus on more mature SaaS companies, aiming to optimize operations and drive expansion. Strategic investors, such as established software companies, may invest in SaaS startups to gain access to innovative technologies and expand their product portfolios.

Amount of investment in SaaS companies

Investment in SaaS companies has surged in recent years, reflecting the sector's growth potential. According to a report by CB Insights, global funding for SaaS companies reached a record high of $84 billion in 2021. This influx of capital has allowed SaaS companies to fuel their product development efforts, expand into new markets, and pursue mergers and acquisitions to enhance their offerings.

Source: Spendesk

Trends in investment in SaaS companies

Several trends have shaped investment in SaaS companies. One notable trend is the shift towards vertical-specific SaaS solutions tailored to meet the unique needs of industries such as healthcare, real estate, and legal services. Another trend is the increasing interest in international SaaS companies, as investors seek opportunities beyond traditional tech hubs. Additionally, there has been a rise in late-stage funding, with established SaaS companies attracting significant investment to accelerate growth and potentially prepare for public offerings.

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in SaaS

AI and ML are playing a crucial role in driving innovation and enhancing the capabilities of SaaS applications. SaaS companies are leveraging AI and ML to deliver advanced analytics, automate tasks, personalize user experiences, and improve data security. For example, AI-powered chatbots are being integrated into customer support systems, enabling efficient and personalized interactions. ML algorithms are being used to analyze vast amounts of data, providing valuable insights and predictive analytics for businesses.


Software as a Service (SaaS) has evolved from its origins to become a global force, reshaping how businesses engage with software. The robust growth of the SaaS market, diverse evaluation metrics, global reach, and transformative impact across industries underscore its significance in 2023.

Investors recognize SaaS as a catalyst for disruption, channeling unprecedented investments and driving trends such as vertical-specific solutions and international expansion. With the infusion of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, SaaS continues to innovate, offering advanced analytics and personalized experiences. In the ever-evolving landscape of technology, SaaS stands as a beacon of innovation, pointing toward a future brimming with possibilities. Hope this article helps you with all the stats you will need.

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