Concentric and Microsoft Launch Hosted E-Mail Service for SMEs
Concentric expands its product offerings with Microsoft Hosted Exchange.
LAS VEGAS .— Today at NXTcomm08, Microsoft Corp. and Concentric announced new hosted e-mail service offerings for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Concentric, a large-scale e-mail service provider, is deploying Microsoft Hosted Exchange to combine the productivity benefits of Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 and Microsoft Office Outlook with its enterprise-class applications hosting platform.
Concentric will market the new services to its existing customers as an additional e-mail option as well as to new customers as a stand-alone or packaged Exchange solution. Concentric’s business customers will be able to add Hosted Exchange mailboxes to their Concentric account and easily manage all Hosted Exchange services and add-ons via a single convenient online control panel and have access to Concentric Customer Support and Professional Services.
Many SMEs have not yet been able to benefit from the productivity gains offered through Microsoft Exchange and Outlook because of high startup costs for purchasing hardware and software, as well as the need to hire technical staff to manage and operate e-mail servers. Concentric’s Hosted Exchange service enables productivity gains, platform reliability and security features, and support at affordable prices with no startup costs. With Outlook Web Access also available, the solution fits closely with Concentric’s target market of online, mobile businesses. In addition, access to e-mail via Windows Mobile-based devices using built-in Microsoft ActiveSync makes this service a rich enhancement to Concentric’s product suite.
“Our long history of providing security-enhanced and reliable e-mail solutions enables us to deliver Microsoft’s industry-leading messaging and collaboration software on one of the most secure and reliable applications hosting platforms available today,” said Barbara Branaman, president at Concentric. “SMEs can now enjoy the same level of functionality that large enterprises have, with the added productivity gains from the robust collaboration tools in Hosted Exchange. And if an SME needs additional assistance, our Professional Services team serves as a ‘pay-as-you-go’ IT department.”
“There are more than 30 million SMEs in the U.S., according to the U.S. Small Business Administration and Internal Revenue Service,” said Martha Béjar, corporate vice president for the Communications Sector at Microsoft. “The SME market is moving toward hosted IT solutions to decrease costs and increase security, reliability and employee productivity. With more than 10 years as a reliable provider of e-mail and Web hosting services, the addition of Microsoft Hosted Exchange is a natural fit for Concentric as it helps round out the company’s offerings for SMEs.”
Concentric is offering four Hosted Exchange mailbox types, and customers can mix and match mailbox types depending on their specific requirements.
Web Exchange. Web Exchange is an affordable offering that provides Microsoft Exchange features via the browser-based Outlook Web Access for $7.95 per user, per month. Other features include global address list, group calendars, tasks and task delegation, public folders, junk e-mail and virus filtering, and e-mail aliases.
Exchange Value. Exchange Value includes all the features listed above plus a full Messaging Application Programming Interface (MAPI) Exchange mailbox with Microsoft Outlook integration and offline address book for $9.95 per user, per month.
Exchange Professional. Exchange Professional includes all the features in Exchange Value with 1 GB of mail storage space per user for $13.95 per user, per month.
Exchange Executive. Exchange Executive includes all the features in Exchange Professional plus free premium junk e-mail filter and Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync and Outlook Mobile Access, and 2 GB of mail storage space per user for $19.95 per user, per month (a savings of $2.95 per month).
The Concentric Hosted Exchange e-mail packages will be available starting July 15, 2008. More information can be found at http://www.concentric.com/hosted_exchange.php.
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