Knosys Limited (ASX:KNO) Managing Director John Thompson talks about the company's software-as-a-service (SaaS) products for intelligent search. These products enable staff in customer service roles to provide consistent, compliant, relevant answers, boosting productivity and client retention.
What I'd like to start off with is, most of us believe that information is the most powerful asset within an organisation. And our purpose, our vision, is how do we enable businesses to connect with that information in the most optimum, the easiest way possible. So if we look at where Knosys come from, we started out in 2015, we had one customer at that point in time, and our revenues were well below a million dollars. We were very much focused on knowledge management at that period of time, and now I look at where we are five years later, we now have over 380 customers, our annual recurring revenue exceeds $8 million per annum, and we have really cornerstone, large enterprise customers across the user base, including ANZ Bank, Optus, Jetstar and other well known brands.
During that period of time, we have also evolved in terms of beyond the knowledge management solution, we provide an employee experience platform, and we also provide a library service platform. So our total addressable market has really grown from where we were before to well over $29 billion, as you'll see further down the presentation.
So, like every organisation there has to be a driver for businesses and companies to acquire your services and your products. For us, remote working has been one of the major drivers. This was happening before COVID. We obviously saw the enforcement of this during COVID, and obviously we believe, and I think a lot of organisations believe, this is now turning into a permanent mode of operation. In fact, Gartner did a survey of CFOs, and I think 74% of them said that remote working is now a permanent thing as part of their businesses. So our applications are to engage with employees and help them be productive, particularly when they're in a remote working environment.
The other area that drives the demand for our solutions is customer’s expectations. As we all know, a lot of customers now engage with a business through its digital platforms, be its website, be its chat bots and things of that nature, as well as its contact centre. What they expect is to have a very consistent experience when they come through either multiple channels or one channel. If a company can provide a really good customer user experience, they have the opportunity to capture the customer, but more importantly, the customer values their services more.
The other main trend that's driving the use of our solutions is content explosion. This has been going on for decades; we're creating more content every day compared to what we were 20 years ago, 10 years ago. Our solutions help to manage that content and deliver it in a manner that it's usable and consumable.
The other aspect to it is, it has to be done in a way from a compliance and governance point of view. An organisation needs to ensure that it can deliver information to its employees, also to customers, in a manner that respects its business principles, or governing regulation, relative to the industry segments that they're involved with.
So if we have a look at Knosys today, as you can see, we have radically changed. We have five offices globally. As I mentioned, we were initially based in Melbourne, we have over 60 employees, we have over 180 customers throughout the world, and currently we're selling solutions into well over 10 plus customers. In terms of our technology, we have a product development team, an R&D team, of over 20, and that's a significant part of our workforce.
If we look at our results for the last financial year, we had a really good year from our perspective. It was a year that we really hit our strategic plan. That plan was to get to a break-even position within the business. To achieve that our license, our recurring revenue, grew by 28% during the year. Our total operating revenue, which includes professional services, was up 46%, and half of that was from organic, and the other half of that was from acquisition as well. So from a cash point of view for the year, we had a positive operating cashflow, which is really good, and we ended the year with cash in the bank of well over $6 million. So as you can see as a company, we achieved our first objective as such. If you look at the graph on the right hand side, you'll see the continual growth in our annual recurring revenue, and our expectation at the moment is we have well over $8 million in recurring revenue and we expect to grow that as we go forward.
So in terms of our clients, and the markets that we are operate in, the core ones are retail and franchising. We sell into obviously banking and financial services, communications, health, legal, and education, and we have a growing customer base in government and in government libraries as such. So what you see is quite a diverse customer base, varying from enterprise customers to mid-market to give us that spread.
In terms of the market segments that we operate within, the total market from our point of view is somewhere around $29 billion. If we look at our employee experience platform, that's the biggest market at $25 billion across the globe, $2 billion for our knowledge management systems and about $2 billion for our library service platform as well. So as you can see, the markets are quite large. They're also growing. They vary between the markets between a 12% to about an 18% growth rate. So we think we're really in a good marketplace to really capture opportunities as we go forward.
To give you a little bit of an overview on our solutions, Knosys has three primary solutions: GreenOrbit, KnowledgeIQ, and Libero. All of these solutions have common themes and I just wanted to explain to you what they are. Fundamentally the core of all the three solutions is intelligent search. The reason we invest in this technology is primarily because the way that I ask the question, the way that you may pose a question, are quite different. But we want the platforms, we want the solutions, to a return the same response, the same answers, the same information, assets to you irrespective of how you phrase that. So intelligent search across our platforms is a common core technology.
The other one is personalisation. With so much information out there, all of our solutions really work hard at providing you a unique user experience so that it understands who you are, what team you're involved with, what part of the business you're active in, and presents to you information based upon what your needs are as such. That way we eliminate that information overload and we try to minimize the amount of search that people have to do.
That brings me to the area of relevance. So one of the interesting attributes of all of our platforms is they remember who you are. They remember what you have used historically, but more importantly, they look at what new information has been created, and is that relevant to you as an individual or within your particular team, and delivers that information to you so you are always up to date. So that's a really important part of the platforms and the solutions that we offer.
And then the final element is governance. I go back to that because governance, for a lot of our customers be they in banking, finance, communications, government, is a really key aspect to it. There's a plethora of platforms that allow people share information, but to the governance of how that's done, which is really of particular importance to our customer base.
So if I just quickly go through the SaaS solutions that we offer, the first one is Libero. So this fundamentally is a SaaS solution designed for public corporate libraries to help the people within those businesses operate the libraries, automate a lot of facilities, but more importantly in today's world, it's about how do you enable people remote access to the information contained not only within that particular library, but adjacent libraries around them as well. So that sort of network library approach. This is a really important solution, particularly during COVID, and will continue to be that way as we go forward. We want members to be able to access information, search information, retrieve it really easily, really quickly.
The next one is KnowledgeIQ, which is our foundation solution. Very much centered at contact centres, helping agents, helping support people, find answers, address customer issues really quickly and be more productive.
The final solution that we offer is GreenOrbit. That very much is built about the employee. How do we enable employees to communicate with one another? How do they collaborate? How do they engage with one another within the platform, and really have a really good user experience? So vital now in this remote workforce and in the post COVID, as we go forward.
So I wanted to talk to you about our future direction. As I mentioned, the last financial year we achieved our strategic goal of getting to a break-even position, as such, post our acquisition cost. So, we are now entering a three-year plan, which is all about growth. So basically we wish to grow the business. We want to increase our customers to over 1,000 by the end of 2024. We want to increase our licensed users to over a million and we want to be recognised as a leader in each of the segments that we're operating within.
Now to achieve that, we've got a five pillar approach. The first one, as we all know, getting new customers is hard, you need to really look after existing ones. So with the existing customer base, we are really working hard on upselling our solutions to them, and also looking at cross sell opportunities within that existing customer base. We're also looking to grow new customers, particularly in our focus areas of the United States and in Europe, branching out of our sales office in Germany. We wish to do the neighbouring countries and really expand our solutions into the EU. Bearing in mind, the EU and the US represent 70% of most of our verticals that we operate in from a market size point of view.
It's very important for us as a company to grow our brand. We want people to recognise Knosys because that helps with the buying decision, but it also translates into our ability to extract more value, higher value from those customers. We also shorten sales cycles because customers know they're dealing with a great company, and that's what we want Knosys to be known for. We are also expanding our IP. As I mentioned to you, we have those four core capabilities and we're investing heavily in them to make them even better and uniform across all of our solutions. With that, we believe that we will get more sales and we will also be able to extract more value for our solutions in the years ahead.
The fifth part of that is our M&A strategy. We continue to look at opportunities there, particularly within our three market segments. If there's an area within the employee experience that we're not addressing, a particular sub segment, we'll explore opportunities to acquire customers and technology in that space. So our M&A has really shifted now towards those three market segments, looking at how we can expand and grow them. We're also looking at how we expand our technology IP to get better at some of those core capabilities.
In terms of investment opportunity, we're very much focused on digital workplace solutions, particularly SaaS products. We're in a really good, high growth, and also large market segment with our three product ranges. We're very much focused on organic and acquisition growth in the US and the EU going forward. We're also looking at how we can improve our technology. Technology investment is a key part to our strategy. We're also looking at how we can shape our business models to improve our recurring revenue because that's the type of business that we want investors to see us as and come and join us on the team.
So that's about it for Knosys. I'm very happy to take questions after this event, and I look forward to speaking to existing investors and new ones in the months and years ahead. Thank you very much.Ends