Microsoft to Deliver Integrated Retail Management Solution For Small and Midmarket Retailers

REDMOND, Wash. May 19, 2002 Microsoft Corp. today announced it will deliver an integrated retail management solution for small to medium-sized retail businesses (SMBs) via the acquisition of Sales Management Systems Inc. (SMS), a leading provider of retail point-of-sale (POS) technology. Microsoft will offer a comprehensive solution that integrates SMS QuickSell series of POS and retail management applications with its Microsoft® Great Plains® financial series of applications, bringing a sophisticated yet easy-to-use and cost-effective offering to small and medium-sized retail businesses.

“Small and midmarket retailers face a challenging economy, increasing competition and rising customer expectations. Market factors heighten the need for a comprehensive and connected retail solution,”
said Satya Nadella, corporate vice president of Microsoft Great Plains Business Solutions.
“The acquisition of SMS and its highly successful QuickSell POS/retail management series is a great fit for Microsoft. The combination of Microsofts technical leadership with SMS award-winning QuickSell series will provide customers with increased operational efficiency gains such as multistore inventory control and fast transaction entry, resulting in a highly functional solution at a low total cost of ownership.”

“Were excited about extending QuickSells buying histories, inventory, purchasing and other integration points to Microsoft Great Plains business management applications,”
said Cung Phan, president of SMS.
“QuickSell resolves SMB retailers information needs and ensures compatibility with industry standards and Web connectivity.”

SMS QuickSell Line of Products

SMS offers retail-proven Windows® -based POS solutions through its QuickSell series. The QuickSell series includes the following:

  • QuickSell Commerce (QSC). QSC is a Web-enabled, scalable POS solution that enables brick-and-mortar retailers to maximize in-store capabilities and expand into chains and the Web for increased sales and marketing opportunities.

  • QuickSell Commerce HeadQuarters (HQ). HQ enables multistore retailers to manage the entire retail enterprise from the head office. HQ pulls and integrates POS and back-office information from multiple, store-level QSC installations.

  • QuickSell 2000.

    Designed to serve single-location SMB stores, QuickSell 2000 has proven it can manage nearly every type of inventory, including specialty hard goods; soft goods; grocery; services; and high-volume, fast-paced convenience stores.

“Information technology used to be a cost center; now its a profit center,”
said Ross ODowling, president of The Moderne, a medium-sized clothing retailer in Cork, Ireland.
“With QuickSell Commerce and its connectivity, we immediately saw possibilities we never could before. Weve done things we thought only the big boys could do. QSC lets us expand as fast and big as business realities allow.”

SMSs QuickSell extends Microsoft Great Plains long-term investment in providing small and midmarket companies with cost-effective, collaborative supply chain management solutions, bringing SMB retailers an affordable, connected package that provides easy customer tracking, efficient inventory management, comprehensive reporting tools and a host of other benefits historically available only to larger enterprises.

The QuickSell series also will leverage Microsoft .NET, Microsoft SQL Server™
and the Microsoft XML Web services platform to allow retail SMBs to interact more fully with partners, customers, suppliers, affiliated stores and other applications. XML Web services allow applications to communicate and share data over the Internet, regardless of operating system, device or programming language. For the retail industry, key benefits of Microsoft .NET range from real-time payment processing and inventory management to greater scalability from single-store to multistore environments.

Increased Partner Opportunity

Microsoft Great Plains investment in developing a comprehensive retail solution on the SMS technology base will open new opportunities for Microsoft partners in the reseller channel, the development community and the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) sector. Resellers will gain a unified retail solution, significantly increasing their SMB customer base and allowing them to specifically target the retail vertical market. Developers can use the Microsoft Great Plains retail solution as a foundation to create customized applications for specific retailers, such as pharmacies and gift registries. OEMs can broaden their reach among SMBs by providing the new solution as a more feature-rich and scalable yet still low-cost upgrade from electronic cash registers.

Availability and Pricing

SMS QuickSell applications continue to be available as stand-alone solutions. POS pricing starts at $990 (U.S.) for QuickSell 2000 and $1,290 (U.S.) for a single store, single register with QuickSell Commerce. The integration with Microsoft Great Plains Dynamics and Small Business Manager will be available in the third quarter of 2002. Pricing will start at $2,285 (U.S.). SMSs QuickSell line of products is currently available in 55 countries and several languages. The integrated Microsoft solution initially will be available in North America, with worldwide rollout expected within the following year.

About Microsoft Great Plains Business Solutions

Microsoft Great Plains provides business applications that help small businesses, mid-market companies, and midsize enterprises become more agile in todays interconnected economy by extending specific information and procedures to employees, customers, vendors and partners. The business applications automate end-to-end business processes across financials, distribution, project accounting, electronic commerce, human resources and payroll, manufacturing, supply chain management, business analytics, sales and marketing management, and customer service and support. More information about the solutions offered by Microsoft Great Plains can be found at http://www.greatplains.com/ or at http://microsoft.com/greatplains/ .

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
“MSFT”
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software any time, any place and on any device.

Microsoft, Great Plains and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. or Great Plains in the United States and/or other countries.

Great Plains Software Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft Corp.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/ on Microsofts corporate information pages. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may since have changed. Journalists and analysts may contact Microsofts Rapid Response Team for additional assistance.