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Study: Software Vendors Needed A 3rd-Party Monetization Solution. Here’s Their Experience Using Thales’ Sentinel

March 23, 2023

Shimon Abouzaglo Shimon Abouzaglo | Global VP of Customer Engagement and Business Value Consulting More About This Author >

This article references the commissioned Total Economic Impact (TEI) study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Thales.

If you are a software provider, you’ll lose market relevance if you do not monetize your software to maximize revenue. Software monetization (SM) is secure licensing which accomplishes two goals: 1) prevents revenue leakage and 2) enables feature entitlement for upsells and cross-sells. Those who tested in-house customized solutions found them costly and inflexible, leading to software providers pining for a worthwhile 3rd party SM solution.

One such SM solution, used by thousands of companies, is Thales’ Sentinel. This SM platform is a configurable, highly scalable software licensing solution that enables new or expanded revenue streams for software manufacturers. To assess the impact of Sentinel on customers, Thales commissioned Forrester Consulting to provide their Total Economic Impact™ (TEI) study. Below is a summary of this study.

Background on Thales Sentinel Software Monetization Platform

Thales provides software licensing and entitlement systems for subscription, pay-per-usage, token, concurrent, and standalone pricing models at both product and feature levels. The solution can be deployed via Cloud, on-prem, or hardware keys. Functions are configurable and automated, and integrate with CRMs, ERPs and other commonly used enterprise software.

Forrester interviewed Thales customers to evaluate costs, benefits, and risks of the platform.

Why Not Go In-House?

Prior to implementing Sentinel, most interviewees tried developing an in-house solution to expand sales with machine learning (ML) capabilities, new licensing packaging options, and SaaS deployment. However, they found that production costs for such a configurable solution were prohibitive, and individual customization for each capability change was too time consuming. Moreover, in-house trials were not user-friendly, did not meet unpredictable market demands, and were insufficient to replace existing legacy solutions. Bottom line: In-house SM costs were too high and could not meet time-to-market needs. Since homegrown solutions were not meeting current requirements, nor flexible enough to meet future requirements, these customers sought out a robust 3rd-party SM solution, and chose Sentinel.

Forrester Consulting TEI Study Conclusions

Forrester aggregated the results from all surveyed customers and created a composite case study of one company with an annual revenue of $1B. Forrester concluded the following quantified benefits from Sentinel:

1) Payback period of 12 months

2) 5-year ROI: 301%

3) 5-Year Net Present Value: $12M

Advantages of Sentinel Usability

The Forrester study reported the following about Thales’ Sentinel platform:

  • Software providers now see software monetization as a given, rather than a potential goal, as evidenced in their financial statements.
  • Customers reported zero implementation performance issues, and therefore Sentinel is considered reliable.
  • Business data insights enable sales strategy decisions. Customers enjoy detailed and higher-quality data than previously, derived from self-serve licensing activity by customers.
  • CX improved. Thales enabled organizations to meet their customer licensing needs while improving the customer experience through a single portal, smartphone apps, and other features, including CRM and ERP integration.

Read the full study: