What The Tech Episode 38: “Innovation Can’t Be Random” with Steven Forth of Ibbaka

Steven Forth WTT

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Ready or not, artificial intelligence is going to fundamentally shift not only how we build and deliver solutions, but how we assign value to products going forward. This is especially acute in the world of SaaS, as the mainstream emergence of generative AI and other machine learning practices changes the entire cost paradigm of product development—and we’re arguably only getting started.

So how can SaaS businesses determine the value of their offerings—and price their solutions accordingly—in this new reality?

Today we welcome Steven Forth, Co-Founder and CEO of Ibbaka, to help answer exactly that.

At Ibbaka, their focus is on helping SaaS companies set pricing models that align with the true value they deliver, helping drive increased revenue, profitability and customer retention in the process. Through both the Ibbaka Valio Platform and through consulting that is informed by research and data, Steven and his team are helping SaaS companies “achieve greatness” in the subscription economy.

And few people are more qualified than Steven to help steer this effort. His journey as an entrepreneur has seen him lead innovative businesses in both the US and Canada, while he’s consulted on go-to-market strategies, value management and pricing for a wide breadth of exciting products and services. He’s even been identified as one of the leading experts in B2B pricing by Openview, combining design and decision making frameworks with value management and pricing strategy to help SaaS businesses grow.

It’s an impressive and exciting mission, and I couldn’t be happier to have Steven join us to discuss his takes on the innovation economy, what it takes to succeed in today’s market, and what’s in store for Ibbaka in 2024.

Innovation Never Stops—and Time is a Scarce Resource

Working with Boast has changed some of Steven Forth’s assumptions about how his most high-value personnel—that is, the senior leaders driving Ibbaka’s research and development—should be spending their time.

On average, teams that don’t work with Boast to capture innovation capital to fuel their R&D can spend up to 60 hours across their entire product team compiling the necessary data to execute a successful SR&ED claim.

Even after all that sunk time, there’s little assurance that the claim has truly captured all of the tax credit-worthy activities—let along that your accountants have communicated your innovation in language the CRA will accept.

As Steven Forth puts it, generative AI isn’t as new as many people may think, and it’s also not going anywhere. To that end, it will fundamentally change how businesses operate going forward, and there’s no turning back from that.

This pushes founders to start rethinking how they price solutions—especially in the SaaS space—as well as fund their operational runways given the tighter operating margins that AI will inevitably bear out.

Watch the full interview on Boast’s YouTube Channel here.

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