Microsoft Announces Support for Onyx Front Office 2000

REDMOND, Wash., May 1, 2000 — Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq
) today announced support for Onyx Front Office 2000, a leading enterprisewide, customer-centric e-business suite of software products from Onyx Software Corp. (Nasdaq
“ONXS” ). Onyx Front Office 2000 on the Microsoft® platform provides companies with an Internet-based competitive advantage by enabling superior marketing, sales and service for employees, customers and partners with a broad e-business platform that allows companies to combine traditional and online business processes.

The Onyx Employee, Partner and Customer portals, built on the Onyx e-Business Engine and the Microsoft platform, delivers a customer-centric model, enterprisewide approach, multichannel support, reliability and quick deployment, resulting in a high return on investment, low total cost of ownership, and industry-leading customer satisfaction.

Microsoft and Onyx Software’s extensive technology integration enables organizations to more effectively sell and market products, and serve their customers by capitalizing on every moment of value in each customer interaction – any time, any place, in any currency or language, and with an enterprisewide process and a firm technological foundation. More than 550 companies are using Onyx and Microsoft technology enterprisewide today.

“Companies today are not only looking for e-business applications with the features they need to leverage now, but they also expect a platform that will help them grow in the future,”
said Ian Rogoff, vice president of the Enterprise Partner Group at Microsoft.
“Onyx and Microsoft provide enterprises with both rich business applications and a flexible e-business backbone that allows them to fulfill their potential and gain competitive edge.”

Microsoft-Onyx Technology Gives Businesses the Power to Compete in Today’s Economy

In 1997, ASB BANK took personal finance in a new direction by launching New Zealand’s first completely phone- and Internet-based bank, under the name of BankDirect.

BankDirect is
24 hours a day, seven days a week and has rapidly become the new way of banking in New Zealand. Offering all the traditional banking products and services, BankDirect is a virtual bank – it has no branches. Customers are served over the telephone, at ATMs and at the BankDirect Web site.

BankDirect account managers use Onyx Front Office to provide personal customer service 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This has maximized sales opportunities for financial products such as savings accounts and loans. In addition, the customer service staff uses Onyx Front Office to respond quickly to queries about lost bank cards, forgotten PIN numbers and loan repayments.

As a virtual bank, BankDirect was able to reduce overhead costs while providing a full set of services to customers. However, it also faced a singular challenge: Instead of building relationships face-to-face, as at a bricks-and-mortar institution, BankDirect needed to cultivate customer relationships electronically to succeed.

Derek Redman, BankDirect’s technology manager, said,
“Customer relationship management is absolutely key to our business. We have to know our customers, understand their behavior, and respond to their needs.”

Because Onyx Front Office organizes information in relation to individual customers, not incidents, every transaction is associated with a valuable relationship. This information empowers account managers to respond appropriately to each customer query.

A crucial factor in BankDirect’s choice of Onyx was its use of Microsoft technologies.
“We were looking for a new platform that we could grow with, that gave us better flexibility and was built on Microsoft Windows®
, SQL Server TM and Exchange Server,”
said Redman.
“Onyx gives us a great deal of flexibility for customizations while retaining all the benefits of a package, such as maintenance and access to new products and enhancements.”

The proof of how effective Onyx Front Office and the Microsoft platform has been for BankDirect is in the company’s impressive customer satisfaction levels. Despite an overall decrease in customer satisfaction with many banks, 95 percent of the more than 1,000 customers surveyed said they would recommend BankDirect to friends and family.

Customers Benefit From Technology Integration

Onyx Front Office 2000 was built on the Microsoft Windows DNA n-tier, component-based architecture that is highly configurable at both the user interface and business services layers, making it a rapidly deployable system with the flexibility to quickly adapt to changing business demands.

Onyx Front Office 2000 utilizes the Microsoft Windows 2000 operating system and Microsoft SQL Server 7.0. It integrates with many Microsoft products, including Microsoft Office 2000, Microsoft Exchange Server, the Outlook®
messaging and collaboration client and Microsoft Site Server Commerce Edition. The seamless integration of Onyx Front Office 2000 with Microsoft products on a single platform provides customers with consistent and easy-to-manage solutions, resulting in lower total cost of ownership. In addition, Onyx fully utilizes Microsoft Commerce Server and the Microsoft BizTalk TM server, so customers will continue to benefit from the latest Microsoft Internet-based technology for e-commerce.

“Microsoft is a valued strategic associate for Onyx Software and the hundreds of customers who rely on the Microsoft platform for its consistency, ease of use and manageability,”
said Eben Frankenberg, senior vice president of Sales and Marketing at Onyx Software.
“Today, more than 550 customers use Onyx Front Office on Microsoft platforms to run their enterprises. Microsoft has been an important ally in the adoption of customer-centric e-business solutions and is an important enabling platform for Onyx Front Office 2000.”

Longstanding Relationship Results in Better Products

Microsoft and Onyx Software’s strategic relationship, forged more than five years ago, means better products for customers through the integration of Microsoft technologies with Onyx applications. This longstanding relationship and early participation by Onyx in Microsoft’s beta programs have helped Onyx take advantage of Microsoft technologies for improved functionality, scalability, performance, ease of use and manageability.

In addition to the extensive engineering and product testing activities, the relationship incorporates many facets of software development. The companies work hand in hand to ensure that Microsoft Windows with SQL Server is the most reliable, quickly deployable and scalable platform for their mutual customers. The success of this effort is demonstrated by the 92 percent of Onyx Front Office seats currently in production and the use of Onyx Front Office in three or more departments across the enterprise at 88 percent of the customer installation sites.

About Onyx Software

Onyx Software is a leading supplier of enterprisewide, customer-centric e-business applications. Onyx Software’s enterprise-class software connects and powers a company’s entire e-business world, including customers, partners and sales, marketing, service and call center functions.

Onyx Software’s award-winning products are known for flexibility, reliability and quick deployment, resulting in a high return on investment, low total cost of ownership and industry-leading customer satisfaction. Onyx Software operates worldwide, supporting large, medium-sized and small companies such as Agile Software, American Express, Broadwing, CommerceOne, Credit Suisse, Dreyfus, Ericsson, FirstWorld Communications, Hummingbird, NTL Group, Portland Trail Blazers, Sharp Electronics, Sierra Health Services, Singapore Cable Vision and US Bancorp. For more information, call (888) 275-6699, visit the Onyx Web site at or send e-mail to [email protected].

About Windows 2000 and Microsoft

Windows 2000 is an ideal platform for the next generation of business computing and addresses the full range of customers’ computing needs, from laptops and desktops to high-end clustered servers. The operating system helps organizations Internet-enable their business with a reliable, manageable infrastructure that is optimized for existing and emerging hardware. More information about Windows 2000 is available at .

Founded in 1975, Microsoft 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, Windows, Outlook and BizTalk are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

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 on Microsoft’s corporate information pages. The Complete Onyx-Microsoft case study on BankDirect is available at .

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