eZ Systems is on the cusp of launching a Software-as-a-Service offering for its media-oriented Web CMS, eZ Publish. We covered the original news here, and as promised, we spoke with eZ’s global partner manager Bertrand Maugain to get more insight into the new eZ Publish SaaS offering and their partner in arms, Mamut ASA. CMSWire: Tell us a little about your partner Mamut. We know that like eZ Systems, they are a Norwegian company and that they claim to have more than 400,000 customers in 16 different countries. What more can you say about them?eZ: Founded in 1994, Mamut is a European provider of complete, integrated software solutions and Internet services for small and medium businesses. They offer highly competitive solutions integrating CRM, sales force, logistics, accounting, e-commerce, domains, e-mail, Web hosting and security. From eZ Systems point of view, Mamut is the most relevant technology partner when it comes to bringing eZ Publish to this market segment since they have this deep knowledge of integrating and deploying on-demand solutions. Here are some basic numbers that tell the Mamut story:* Established 1994, IPO'ed in May 2004* Headquartered in Oslo, Norway* 495 employees* > 400,000 customers in 16 countries* > 95,000 Mamut Open Services users* owns two large European hosting companies:** Active 24: Offers domains and web hosting in sixteen European countries** Loopia: Offers domains and web hosting in SwedenCMSWire:Is this a Europe-only solution? With Mamut serving 16 different countries, where are their data centers located and what countries does eZ expect to serve with this offering?eZ: Yes, this is currently a solution that will be sold by Mamut in the countries where they are located. The service is completely translated in those 16 languages. For sure, this is a European solution with all data centers in Europe, even if the service is available and performant from the U.S. (Mamut already has customers located in North America).From eZ Systems perspective, we want to first focus on high-quality services in Europe, before looking at other regions of the globe.CMSWire: Is this SaaS a multi-tenant scenario where multiple clients will be sitting on a single eZ Publish install, or will there be separate installs for each client?eZ: Yes this is a multi-tenant scenario, where this SaaS solution will be handling multiple clients per cluster set-up. We can, indeed, host many thousands of clients per installation. This is using the new Site Factory functionality within eZ Publish. The solution is fully managed by the customer via the browser. The solution also utilizes the new Visual Style Editor that enables the customers to style the site in a point-and-click fashion. These features will also be migrated back into standard eZ Publish releases soon.CMSWire: What kind of cost structure will we be seeing?eZ: The final pricing is not yet available and will be revealed at the launch. But part of the offering will be included by default for all existing customers and will have some different packages and setups that are offered on a competitive monthly pricing.CMSWire: Does Mamut host other packages? If so, are they integrated with eZ Publish?eZ: Mamut is a generic hosting provider via Active24 and Loopia, and this will be continued. eZ Publish is offered as an integrated solution via Mamut One. The initial release does not include Webshop and integration with the Mamut ERP backend, but we expect thisthis will be offered in an upcoming release.This is also a great value for eZ Publish customers. This is not only a CMS on-demand offering but step-by-step, fully-integrated solution providing all the tools needed by SMEs, such as CRM, ERP and more. And we bring them an enterprise-level Web CMS used by some of the largest companies in the world. The open source model we have makes that possible.CMSWire: eZ Systems have said that they are 110% focused on the media and online publishing space. Does this offering diverge from that path and target small business or is it part of the media strategy? If it's part of the media strategy, please explain how.eZ: I would say that we are 200% focused on the media vertical. That is also the reason why we do this SaaS offering together with a technology partner and not our own.eZ Systems is very dedicated to media and the main push from eZ is in this direction. eZ Publish is used by companies in any vertical and by any size and will continue to do so. We see the focus on media as one of the most demanding verticals for CMS solutions and use this to push our product development, marketing and the rest of eZ in this direction. Ultimately, we see the media focus benefiting customers from any vertical, as they will gain from most of the improvements we make as we work with our media clients.The SaaS solution in question will be sold and supported by Mamut, eZ is delivering eZ Publish Premium in a Site Factory setup for Mamut. In addition, some specific functionally have been developed to serve the SaaS setup and these improvements will go back into the core eZ Publish product.We like to think about media as our most active area for eZ Publish, but will of course continue to support our customers and partners working with other verticals.