New Microsoft Office Offerings Deliver Big Advances in Accounting and Business Management for Small Companies
Host of ISV and partner offerings add further value to Microsoft Office Small Business Management Edition 2006 and Microsoft Office Small Business Accounting 2006.
REDMOND, Wash. — Sept. 7, 2005 — Microsoft Corp. today announced general availability and promotional pricing for Microsoft® Office Small Business Accounting 2006 and Microsoft Office Small Business Management Edition 2006, two new Microsoft Office offerings designed to enable small businesses to manage all their sales, marketing and financial processes within the familiar, easy-to-use Office environment. With strong support from original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), retailers, independent software vendors (ISVs) and service providers, these new solutions are evidence of the continuation of Microsoft’s commitment to delivering integrated solutions specifically developed to help small businesses start, grow and thrive.
“These solutions were built from the ground up to support the ways that small businesses actually work, and to be incredibly easy for employees to implement and use,” said Bill Gates, chairman and chief software architect at Microsoft. “Together with our partners, we’re proud to deliver new innovations that enable small businesses to be more productive and profitable.”
Microsoft Office Small Business Accounting 2006 is a full-featured financial management software solution that is available as a stand-alone offering or as part of Office Small Business Management Edition 2006, which also includes Microsoft Office Outlook® 2003 with Business Contact Manager Update, Microsoft Office Word 2003, Microsoft Office Excel® 2003, Microsoft Office PowerPoint® 2003, Microsoft Office Publisher 2003 and Microsoft Office Access 2003.
Nearly 4,800 U.S. small businesses took part in the beta testing of Small Business Accounting and saw positive results in ease of use and integration. “First and foremost, Small Business Accounting 2006 and Outlook 2003 with Business Contact Manager are incredibly easy to use and have fundamentally improved how we manage our business by allowing us to integrate all our customer data in one view — including our financial history and interaction records,” said Chris Schatte, owner of Texoma Home and Garden. “More accurate bookkeeping also has contributed to better cash flow and higher profits. We have automated invoice creation, improved inventory management, streamlined billing of our services and increased visibility into the business — plus I can go home, on average, two hours earlier in the day.”
Customers and accountants have requested 50,000 trial copies of Small Business Accounting, making it one of the most anticipated Microsoft small-business solutions ever. In response to feedback from customers, accounting professionals and partners since the beta release, Microsoft also is providing new features for Microsoft Small Business Accounting 2006 that let users memorize frequently entered transactions and save them as templates for reuse, manage payroll manually using an integrated Excel solution, back up the company’s database to share with an accountant or other consultant, and create profit-and-loss statements by class or business segment.
Strong Relationships, Strong Solutions
Today’s release of the Microsoft Office Small Business Management Edition and Small Business Accounting is accompanied by a number of new and ongoing relationships. These new solutions will be widely available through reseller and retailer outlets, thanks to efforts under way with OEMs and retailers. New relationships with leading distributors and retailers include these:
Dell PCs loaded with Microsoft Office Small Business Management Edition. As the marquee OEM for Microsoft Office Small Business Accounting 2006, Dell Inc. will offer the software preinstalled on selected Dell small-business computing systems, including Dimension desktops and Inspiron notebooks.
Well-known office channels to distribute Microsoft Office small-business solutions. Gateway Inc. will offer Office Small Business Management Edition 2006 on its new S-series of desktop and notebooks, available through Gateway direct at http://www.GateWay.com. In addition, more than 65,000 value added resellers and system builders have received Office Small Business Accounting for distribution.
Leading retailers to distribute Office small-business solutions. Microsoft has entered into agreements with leading retailers including Amazon.com, Best Buy Company Inc., CompUSA Inc., Office Depot Inc., OfficeMax® Inc. and Staples Inc. to promote the new editions of Office Small Business Management and Small Business Accounting. As a result, the products will be distributed in over 5,000 U.S. retail outlets.
Microsoft Small Business Accounting has also seen strong momentum within the professional accounting community and among ISVs. More than 3,000 accountants have already signed up for the Microsoft Professional Accountants’ Network, a community designed specifically for accounting professionals to help them expand their business by supporting their critical role in helping small businesses meet their financial management needs. Microsoft is also working with ISVs to further extend the capabilities and benefits of these new Office products to address the industry- or process-specific needs of small-business customers. Currently more than 75 ISV applications have been designed to integrate with the new Office Small Business Accounting and are either available or in the final stages of development. In addition, more than 20,000 copies of the Software Development Kit for Office Small Business Accounting 2006 have been downloaded from the Microsoft Web site.
To further extend the capabilities of Small Business Accounting, Microsoft is joining with the following industry leaders to incorporate rich services to help small businesses automate critical business processes such as payroll, taxes, banking and credit-card processing:
ADP provides integrated payroll and tax processing services. ADP® Small Business Services (ADP Inc.) has delivered a do-it-yourself, low-cost solution for small businesses that seek full control over their payroll processing and tax filing. Specifically developed for Microsoft Office Small Business Accounting 2006, this new ADP software solution is simple to set up and use, yet robust enough to calculate federal, state and local taxes. Users also have the option to upgrade to ADP Total Payroll, a full-service payroll processing solution. The software seamlessly integrates with Small Business Accounting, providing for quick and efficient completion of financial tasks, reducing the chance of errors and helping ensure compliance.
Credit-card processing is offered through select providers. Microsoft is collaborating with premier providers, including Chase Merchant Services LLC, to offer processing of credit and debit card payments from within the Office Small Business Accounting software. The credit-card processing capabilities can help small businesses increase revenue by accepting phone orders and reaching new customers who prefer to pay by credit card. Small businesses can reduce costs through preferred card-processing rates and the elimination of the need for a separate card-processing terminal or telephone line. The solution also helps save time and reduce data entry by capturing credit- and debit-card transactions directly within Office Small Business Accounting.
Digital Insight and CheckFree facilitate integration with financial institutions. Digital Insight Corp. is the leading online banking provider and CheckFree Corp. is the leading provider of electronic billing and payment processing services to financial institutions. Both companies have certified Microsoft Small Business Accounting 2006 for online banking using Direct Connect, the premier standard for online banking connectivity. This certification helps enable small-business clients at participating financial institutions to save time by downloading transactions and paying their bills electronically via Office Small Business Accounting 2006.
Compatible checks, forms and other supplies are offered by Deluxe Small Business Services. As the nation’s leading check printer, Deluxe offers small businesses compatible business checks, forms, envelopes and related printed products designed specifically for use with Microsoft Office Small Business Accounting 2006. Links within the software help guide customers to a private-label Web site (http://www.mschecksandforms.com) where they can easily order a comprehensive selection of Deluxe products in the formats and styles that best meet their needs.
Tax services with Thomson Creative Solutions and Taxsoftware.com. Thomson Creative Solutions, a provider of the broadest line of seamlessly integrated tax write-up software, plans to offer integration between its software and Small Business Accounting to enable accountants to import data from Small Business Accounting directly into Creative Solutions’ Write-Up CS program. Taxsoftware.com is an online provider of tax software services that provide calculations, printing and e-filing. It has developed integration with Small Business Accounting that helps enable users to import Small Business Accounting data, and e-file directly with the IRS and state tax agencies. Taxsoftware.com can be used by any small businesses, on a pay-per-return basis or as an e-services account for paid preparers.
Microsoft Office Small Business Accounting 2006 is available in the U.S. for an after-rebate price of $149 ($179 estimated retail price less $30 mail in rebate*). ADP Payroll for Microsoft Office Small Business Accounting is available for $169 per year. Microsoft Small Business Management Edition 2006 is available in the U.S for an after-rebate price of $569 and to existing Microsoft Office customers for an upgrade price of $399 (product estimated retail prices are $669 and $499, respectively, less $100 mail-in rebates*). Customers can go to http://www.office.microsoft.com/sba to learn more.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
* Actual retail prices vary. Limit one rebate per household. Additional rebate terms apply. See product packaging or Web site for offer details.
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