Microsoft Makes It Easier for Small and Midsize Businesses To Receive Volume Product Discounts

REDMOND, Wash., Feb. 1, 1999 — Microsoft Corp. today announced Microsoft® Licensing Online (MLO), a transaction Web site that offers small and midsize businesses a method to more easily acquire multiple licenses for Microsoft products at volume discounts. Resellers currently participating in MLO are License Online, Computer Discount Warehouse and Insight.

“As the PC market continues to grow, particularly in the small business segment, it is more important than ever for small and midsize companies to have easy access to licensing information and volume purchase discounts,”
said Sam Jadallah, vice president, organization customer unit at Microsoft.
“MLO, currently in its first phase, is one of several steps Microsoft is taking to continue to simplify the acquisition of software and licenses for small and midsize business customers.”

Easy Access to Resellers and Volume Discounts

Through MLO, businesses with as few as five PCs can receive Microsoft Open License volume discounts. Open License enables businesses to make an up-front volume purchase that establishes a discount level for a two-year period. Subsequent purchases, even the purchase of a single license, can be made at that same volume discount level during the two-year period. For example, a small business that wants to purchase five licenses for Office 97 Professional would pay $599 (ERP) for each licensed, full-packaged product if purchased individually, but only $466 (ERP) each if purchased as an Open License, which is a savings of approximately 22 percent. For larger orders, the discount would be even greater.

Ordering Open Licenses through MLO is a simple, three-step process. First, the customer chooses to create a new Open License order or to order additional licenses through an existing Open License agreement. Second, using a simple product selection tool, the customer chooses the Microsoft products, license type (new or upgrade) and quantities to order. All products selected are listed on an order summary page, and the estimated retail price (ERP) for the licenses are displayed. If the company has an existing Open License agreement, its predetermined discount level is automatically reflected in the pricing displayed. Finally, the customer selects one of the participating online resellers and completes the transaction. Or the customer can print the order summary and give it to its preferred reseller for price quotation and order fulfillment.

Technology Providers Benefit From Online Licensing

Based on their business model, technology providers that do not resell software can choose to send their customers to the MLO site to complete an Open License purchase through one of the online resellers, or, for providers who do sell software, use the site to configure and print an Open License order for their customers. In the case of License Online, customers will be able to select their Microsoft Certified Solution Provider (MCSP) or value added provider (VAP) from a pull-down menu, or one will be chosen for them based on ZIP code.

License Online, one of three online resellers participating in the first phase of MLO, is an independent company that focuses on helping technology providers, including Microsoft

Certified Solution Providers, more easily include licensing in their offering to customers. Currently, 3,500 MCSPs and value added providers are working with License Online. License Online processes Open License orders for technology providers’ customers at prices set in advance by the technology provider. The technology provider profits from the sale of the licenses while maintaining its relationship with the customer for services and support.

For more information on Microsoft Licensing Online, visit the Web site at .

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Offers and/or prices valid in the United States only and may not be available in other countries.

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