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Ovum’s Software Market Forecasts: Enterprise Applications, 2016–21 study reflects volatility and competitive disruption impacting all regions and industries. Customer engagement applications have the fastest growth rates as competition for customers intensifies.


  • Although Middle East & Africa is the fastest growing region, China, Indonesia, and India are the fastest growing countries.
  • Growth rates in different industries reflect competitive intensity and potential for disruption.
  • SaaS growth is accelerating, and by 2021, SaaS CRM will exceed the total market for ERP.

Features and Benefits

  • Provides enterprise applications vendors with insights into the higher-growth markets.
  • Provides guidance for enterprises to gain the maximum benefits from enterprise application investments.

Key questions answered

  • What applications are growing the fastest and why?
  • How does investment in enterprise applications vary by region and industry?
  • What are the market sizes and growth rates for the different enterprise applications?

Table of contents


  • Catalyst
  • Ovum view
  • Key messages


  • Recommendations for enterprises
  • Recommendations for vendors

Customer engagement applications have fastest growth rates as competition for customers intensifies

  • Commerce is the fastest growing category with a CAGR of 14.7%, with CRM close behind at 14.43%
  • CRM has expanded its remit and is being consumed on a modular basis

MEA is the fastest growing region, but China, Indonesia, and India are the fastest growing countries

  • Apart from commerce, MEA is the fastest growing region
  • China, Indonesia, and India will grow fastest overall
  • AO leads growth in commerce applications
  • MEA is the fastest growing market for CRM applications
  • ERP shows sluggish growth overall, with MEA the fastest growing region

Growth rates in different industries reflect competitive intensity and potential for disruption

  • Healthcare faces rising patient demand at lower cost
  • Manufacturing needs customer connections to thrive
  • Telcos are morphing into digital services providers
  • Competitive intensity is also driving growth across a range of industries

SaaS growth is accelerating, and by 2021 SaaS CRM will exceed the total market for ERP

  • SaaS customer engagement applications are the fastest growing enterprise applications
  • The market for SaaS CRM will exceed ERP by 2021
  • Enterprise applications are in good health


  • Methodology
  • Further reading
  • Author

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