SOURCE: Sage Software

February 22, 2006 09:29 ET

Sage Group Launches Global CRM Localization and European Application Hosting Center

Grant Awarded to Sage From IDA Ireland, the Irish Government's Industrial Development Agency

IRVINE, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- February 22, 2006 -- The Sage Group, plc (LSE: SGE.L) announced today the addition of a Dublin, Ireland based localization and application hosting center to its global CRM infrastructure, enabling the company to accelerate the development of localized CRM products to meet country-specific needs and to provide hosted CRM services to small and medium-sized businesses throughout Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

This latest development is a major step for Sage in executing on its global CRM strategy introduced in October 2005. Sage's global CRM organization oversees the company's Sage CRM Solutions portfolio that includes ACT! by Sage for individuals, small businesses and enterprise workgroups; Sage CRM that provides hosted and on-premises CRM for small and medium-sized businesses; and Sage CRM SalesLogix that provides full suite, customizable CRM for medium-sized businesses and small enterprises.

"This new global CRM facility is an important step for accelerating the pace of delivering localized CRM products to diverse markets, especially those in Europe where hundreds of thousands of businesses are already using Sage accounting solutions," said Dave Batt, general manager of global CRM for Sage. "The co-operation and support of IDA Ireland in making this possible is a strong endorsement for Sage and our CRM strategy of global reach with local touch."

Sage is also announcing the creation of its second application hosting center in Dublin which will be responsible for hosting of its expanding number of customer on-line applications. In addition the center will provide additional levels of back-up and disaster recovery operations for both customer and operating divisions worldwide.

The new localization and application hosting center is being developed through expansion of existing Sage facilities in Dublin and is supported by IDA Ireland (Industrial Development Agency) which has grant aided both initiatives. IDA Ireland is an Irish Government agency with responsibility for securing new investment from overseas in manufacturing and internationally traded services sectors. It also encourages existing investors to expand and develop their businesses.

Sage has already commenced developing the necessary IT infrastructure and has made a number of key local appointments to ensure an early start for the facility. In 2006, in addition to continued product upgrades for its Sage CRM Solutions family, Sage is planning localization of ACT! by Sage into German, French, Spanish and Dutch, and of Sage CRM SalesLogix to German and French.

Sage increased its base of CRM users by 200,000 to 2.5 million in its most recent fiscal year ended September 30, 2005, and has made significant steps in forwarding its CRM agenda in recent months by:

--  Securing grant support and co-operation with IDA Ireland to develop
    the localization and hosting center announced today;
--  Strengthening regional delivery and support capabilities through
    concerted training and education programs in Asia Pacific, Germany, Spain,
    and France;
--  Launching and adopting the unified Sage CRM Solutions family brand in
    Asia Pacific, North America, and Europe;
--  Launching Sage CRM in Spanish, French, and German versions;
--  Launching ACT! by Sage for Web 2006 (January 2006);
--  Releasing SalesLogix Marketing (November 2005).
Sage experienced 14% growth in its CRM business worldwide in the year ended September 30, 2005 prior to developing the global CRM organization. Sage's new global approach to CRM takes advantage of the company's strong local presence in countries around the world, where sales, service, and support capabilities serve 4.7 million businesses and work with 23,000 business partners and 40,000 accountant partners. By centralizing strategy and localization of CRM products, Sage can deliver stronger products to local markets faster.

About Sage Software (formerly Best Software)

Sage Software offers leading business management software and services that support the needs, challenges and dreams of more than 2.5 million small and mid-sized business customers in North America. Its parent company, The Sage Group plc (LSE: SGE.L), supports 4.7 million customers worldwide. For more than 25 years, Sage Software has delivered easy-to-use, scalable and customizable software for accounting, customer relationship management, human resources, time tracking and the specialized needs of accounting practices and the construction, distribution, manufacturing, nonprofit and real estate industries. For more information, please visit the Web site at or call (866) 308 2378.

© 2006 Sage Software, Inc. All rights reserved. All other brands are trademarks of their respective companies.

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