Growing a business using the cloud and SaaS

Warren Leow, CEO of Inmagine recounts how the company evolved from a digital stock photo library to providing a creative ecosystem for businesses.

business continuity, cloud, saas


COVID-19 resulted in many businesses having to pivot their operations and business models to ensure growth and business continuity.

One such strategy that businesses adopt would be the introduction of its solutions following a Software as a Service (SaaS) model. For Inmagine, this meant offering its products –, Inmagine Brain, 123RF, and Pixlr – on a SaaS model to simplify the creative process for all levels of users (freelancers, marketers, influencers, and business owners) as a means of making design tools easy and accessible for everyone.

“Inmagine was founded in 2000 and have continued to grow with the demand of SaaS increasing. In Southeast Asia, the market for stock and creative software is slated to grow at an aggressive pace. Adobe forecasts the global market to grow by $30-40 billion a year, and we believe Asia Pacific will eventually make up half of that market,” said Warren Leow, CEO of Inmagine

“Cloud helps with mobility and ease of maintenance. It’s a given that more and more products and services will be shifting towards being on the cloud as well as being on subscription basis. Hence why we are also in the midst of focusing more on SaaS as a company.”

Catering to clients with declining budgets

Understandably, despite diversifying one’s solutions and introducing them according to a SaaS model, customers could have some trouble wrangling the budget needed to acquire these solutions due to budget cuts as a response to the pandemic.

Leow shared some of the measures that Inmagine introduced to help customers during tougher times:

  • Offering low entry point packages that fit into their current budgets
  • Providing extended free trials for SaaS tools
  • Launching new products that will cater to all user levels – faster, easier and cheaper; without a steep learning curve

“The key thing is to focus on the differentiated value add which you can bring,” added Leow. “We have connected with hundreds of creatives, marketing departments, and media giants, and we have learned a great deal about their pain points. We continue to pivot and disrupt ourselves to stay relevant to offer the most up to date services to our customers.”

Cloud does not mean lesser security

Often with cloud-based solutions, there is a perceived notion of there being a lack of security or issues with compliance and lack of control. Leow acknowledges these concerns, adding that Inmagine works closely with their team to ensure that these issues are addressed.

“We take security very seriously and do not skip any steps when it comes to achieving a safe and secure cloud for consumers,” said Leow. “In addition, processes and culture are important to ensure compliance with best practices.”

Leow believes that the company will maintain its growth even when the market recovers – citing that businesses that have adopted SaaS will continue to utilise it moving forward.

“This pandemic has shown us how important the technology space is. Many companies and businesses have moved from offline to online almost overnight. It has definitely pushed everyone to be more technologically inclined than before. Tech is not a luxury but a must to enable continuous improvements.”

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