Microsoft Business Solutions Announces New Release Of Microsoft Business Portal

REDMOND, Wash., Feb. 2, 2004 — Microsoft Business Solutions today announced the availability of Microsoft® Business Solutions Business Portal 2.0. Integrated with Microsoft Business Solutions–Great Plains®
and Microsoft Business Solutions–Solomon business applications, the new release will help organizations further extend their financial management solutions, providing opportunities for greater business information- and process-sharing for all employees.

The major enhancement to Microsoft Business Portal 2.0 is the adoption of Windows®
SharePoint (TM) Services as its foundation, meaning Microsoft Business Portal can now offer SharePoint Web Parts such as document libraries, calendars, announcements and others to record activities, share and edit documents, track meeting notes, and provide links to other relevant sites. In addition, SharePoint Web Parts created by other developers can be deployed through Microsoft Business Portal 2.0, dramatically increasing the range of information and services that can be delivered through the portal.

“Microsoft Business Portal 2.0 represents a major step forward for our customers by offering them increased benefits from their financial management solution, using the latest standards for information delivery and collaboration,” said Karen Engel, group product manager at Microsoft Business Solutions. “In release 2.0, Microsoft continues to deliver on its commitment to provide business solutions that help small and midmarket segment companies realize more value from their IT investments.”

With Windows SharePoint Services, Microsoft Business Portal 2.0 provides a strong solution that delivers the applications, information and processes employees need to perform more efficiently. Employees will be able to share and collaborate on documents, create new pages more easily, add Microsoft Excel graphs to portal pages, add sites for projects and meetings, and connect with external data sources.

“Microsoft Business Portal 2.0, with Windows SharePoint Services, delivers greater value by enabling us to dramatically improve the ability of our clients to collaborate across the organization, helping them deliver on their mission,” said Barry Culman, CEO of EYT Inc.

Enhancements also have been made to the Human Resource Management (HRM) Self Service Suite, available to U.S. users of Microsoft Great Plains. These include Multi-Level Direct Reports and Performance Review functionality, providing managers with a holistic view of an employee’s progress. Microsoft Solomon customers will benefit from the new Payroll Time and Attendance module, enabling employees to enter timecards through Microsoft Business Portal.

“Midmarket customers are always looking for ways to improve existing operations and better utilize current IT infrastructure,” said Dr. Katherine Jones, managing director of enterprise business applications at Aberdeen Group. “The latest release of Microsoft Business Portal meets this demand with an affordable, collaborative tool that extends the benefits of a financial management solution to the employee desktop.”

Availability and Pricing

Microsoft Business Portal is available as part of Microsoft Great Plains and Microsoft Solomon (U.S. edition) in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Australia, New Zealand, Southeast Asia, South Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America. Microsoft Business Portal user access licenses are now less expensive, priced at $20 (U.S.) to $40 (U.S.) per user based on the number of licenses purchased, with a $40,000 (U.S.) unlimited employee user license.

Microsoft Business Portal is available through Microsoft Certified Business Solutions reselling partners and is backed by the award-winning support and training of Microsoft Business Solutions.

About Microsoft Business Solutions

Microsoft Business Solutions, a business group of Microsoft, offers a wide range of integrated, end-to-end business applications and services designed to help small, midmarket segment and corporate businesses become more connected with customers, employees, partners and suppliers. Microsoft Business Solutions’ applications optimize strategic business processes across financial management, analytics, human resources management, project management, customer relationship management, field service management, supply chain management, e-commerce, manufacturing and retail management. The applications are designed to provide insight to help customers achieve business success. More information about Microsoft Business Solutions can be found at .

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) 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, Windows and SharePoint are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp., Great Plains Software Inc. or their affiliates in the United States and/or other countries.

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

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

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