Winners Announced in 1998 Industry Solution Awards For Midmarket Accounting Sponsored by Microsoft

SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 19, 1999 — Microsoft Corp. today announced three winners for the 1998 Mid Market Accounting and ERP Industry Solution Awards (ISAs) at the Softworld Accounting and Finance event in San Francisco. The awards, co-sponsored by Business Finance magazine, were presented in a ceremony held at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport.

ISAs are designed to recognize software applications developers in the midmarket accounting and enterprise resource planning (ERP) industry. Winners were selected by an independent panel of judges who scored entries based on their use of the Microsoft®
Windows NT® Server operating system and the BackOffice® family of products to provide tangible business benefits in accounting. To participate in the ISAs, vendors were asked to provide an example of a customer that had improved its business by implementing the vendor’s solution.

“It’s exciting to see how the customer ultimately benefits from the applications that are developed by ISVs using Microsoft technology,” said Christy Reichhelm, marketing manager, midmarket ERP and accounting industry, Microsoft. “These customer stories speak volumes about the ease of implementation and great returns on investment that are possible with the impressive array of solutions developed on the Microsoft BackOffice platform.”

“Business Finance magazine has been tracking the progress of accounting solutions based on Microsoft BackOffice technology for some years now,” said Stewart McKie, technology editor, Business Finance. “The ISV solutions previewed at the Industry Solution Awards demonstrate that customers can continue to expect innovative functionality and close integration with Microsoft products from a rapidly growing range of business management applications.”

ISA Finalists

A panel of industry experts and analysts selected finalists in three categories. For best Mid Market/Financial Management Functionality, the finalists were ACCPAC International Inc., Great Plains Software Inc. and Infinium Software Inc. For best Mid Market/Financial Management Technology Integration, the finalists were Apta Software (formerly ALSTEC Systems), Great Plains and Sage Software Inc. For best Complementary Mid Market Application, the finalists were Best Software Inc., The Ultimate Software Group Inc. and Walker Interactive Systems Inc. The finalists demonstrated their solutions at Softworld, and winners were selected after judges viewed their solutions on-site.

Award Winners Selection Committee

The judging panel included Louis Matherne of American Institute of CPAs, Eric Cohen of Cohen Computer Consulting, David Moody of CPA Software News, Jim Holincheck of Giga Information Group Inc., Stewart McKie of Business Finance Magazine, David Christopherson of PricewaterhouseCoopers, Michael Castelluccio of Management Accounting, and Elaine Watson of SoftResources LLC.

The winners in the three ISA categories specific to midmarket accounting are as follows:

Best Mid Market/Financial Management Functionality: Great Plains Software Inc.

Customer Implementation:

Great Plains is a leading provider of Windows NT- and Microsoft SQL Server
-based enterprisewide solutions to the midmarket. Great Plains’ Windows NT-based client/server product lines, Dynamics and Dynamics C/S+, are designed to meet the broad spectrum of business application software needs of midmarket businesses. The Dynamics family of products includes financial, distribution, consolidations and budgeting, manufacturing, payroll, human resources and service management solutions.

“This award demonstrates how effectively our Dynamics C/S+ solution solves real-world problems while integrating the powerful capabilities of Microsoft technologies,” said Darren Laybourn, vice president, global development at Great Plains. “We are honored to receive this award and the independent recognition of the power of our solution.”

Best Mid Market/Financial Management Technology Integration: Sage Software Inc.

Customer Implementation: A Better Way of Learning

Sage is one of the world’s leading suppliers of mainstream PC accounting software. Acuity Applications is a comprehensive suite of client/server business applications exclusively available for Microsoft BackOffice. It consists of Acuity Financial accounting software, Acuity Visual Tools application development software and Acuity Projects project accounting software.

“Our top pick for an industry-standard, cost-effective database platform was Microsoft SQL Server,” said Jess Hartmann, CIO, A Better Way of Learning. “Once we made that decision, Acuity was an equally obvious choice because of its clearly superior technology. Acuity is built specifically for the SQL Server environment and optimized for Microsoft-based platforms. The fact that we could add functionality and streamline integration using Acuity Visual Tools was another key differentiator for us.”

Best Complementary Mid Market Application: Best Software Inc.

Customer Implementation: JVC America Inc.

Best Software is one of the leading providers of corporate resource management solutions for midmarket organizations. Best! Imperativ HRMS is an integrated human resource and payroll solution. Built on top of components of Microsoft BackOffice, it provides Web-based access for all roles in an organization so staff can maintain and use information needed to complete job responsibilities.

“Best! Imperativ HRMS has been well-received by the industry since it was launched last spring,” said Tim Davenport, CEO of Best Software. “This newest award further validates the industry’s opinion of the solution’s advanced technology, low cost of ownership and ease of use. More important, we’re also receiving praise from customers, who say that Best! Imperativ HRMS delivers what organizations want: strong functionality that is easily implemented. This would not be possible without Microsoft BackOffice technology.”

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) 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.

©1999 Microsoft Corp. All rights reserved.

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

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

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