SOURCE: Sage Software

September 06, 2005 09:00 ET

Sage Software Announces ACT! by Sage 2006 Newest Version of #1 Selling Contact and Customer Manager

Enhanced Productivity, Simple Administration and Expanded Accounting Integration for Individuals and Small Businesses Managing High-Value Customer Relationships

SCOTTSDALE, AZ -- (MARKET WIRE) -- September 6, 2005 -- Sage Software today introduced ACT! by Sage 2006, the contact and customer management solution for individuals and small businesses of one to ten networked users. ACT! debuted in 1987 and today is the #1 selling contact and customer management tool of choice by over 2.5 million users worldwide. New features include advanced company and group tree view, easy options for managing contact, group and company associations and expanded accounting link integrations. ACT! 2006 is available to new users for $229.99 MSRP, and $149.95 MSRP for existing ACT! users.

"Assisting individuals and small businesses with the vital need to manage their high-value customer relationships is the essence of ACT!," said Joe Bergera, ACT! senior vice president and general manager for Sage Software. "ACT! 2006 delivers easy-to-use and intuitive features, right out of the box, to meet the needs of people who focus daily on the balance of sales, marketing and administrative tasks required to build successful businesses."

ACT! installs quickly and easily to help users organize the contact details, notes, histories, appointments and documents required to build and sustain successful customer relationships. ACT! data fields, contact views, calendar options, sales forecasting and opportunity tracking capabilities can be used as is or easily customized to address various business requirements.

ACT! 2006 integrates with many common business applications including Microsoft® Office, Lotus Notes®(1) and popular Palm OS® and Pocket PC handheld devices. ACT! 2006 has expanded accounting capabilities including Sage BusinessWorks 50 Accounting, Peachtree by Sage, Simply Accounting by Sage and QuickBooks 2005 Pro/Premier integration.(2)

"Small businesses across all industry types rely on cost-effective applications that are designed to address their unique business environments," noted Sanjeev Aggarwal, senior analyst for small and medium business strategies at the Yankee Group. "ACT! responds to these needs providing easy installation and an intuitive user interface that millions of customers value. With its proven track record, ACT! is an example of a successful user-focused small business application."

New ACT! 2006 Features

ACT! 2006 provides new features to enrich the user experience and simplify database administration including:

--  Advanced company and group tree view to easily visualize group and
    company relationships and their hierarchy within subgroups and divisions;
--  Add contacts easily to multiple groups and companies via contact
    detail view, and create hyperlinks when linking contacts to companies;
--  Phone numbers printed on ACT! calendars for all scheduled calls, even
    if not originally listed by user in the appointment, for at-a-glance
    access;
--  Enhanced attachment synchronization to optimize synch time and keep
    all necessary documents current;
--  Database synchronization up to 365 days to assist remote employees
    with data security, expired databases can synch back to server one last
    time to prevent data loss;
--  Remote user permissions to allow database back-up, restore and
    maintenance functions;
--  Terminal services/Citrix(3) support to leverage existing
    infrastructure and allow users from different locations to access the same
    ACT! database without the need for VPN access;
--  Lotus Notes integration to perform ACT! functions from email and track
    history.
    
Simple design keeps wide variety of users in command of high-value relationships

ACT! 2006 user benefits cross industries and business types to serve the needs of a wide range of users including:

--  Sales professionals and consultants who need to manage clients and
    prospects;
--  Real estate agents who need to maintain relationships with buyers,
    sellers, referrers, property owners and other agents;
--  Recruiters who need to track job candidates and clients to match job
    seekers and employers efficiently;
--  Seminar and training professionals who need to manage interactions
    with instructors, promoters, attendees, facility managers, and equipment
    suppliers;
--  Manufacturers' representatives who need to track transactions and
    interactions with manufacturers and customers;
--  Business owners and managers who need to track customers, prospects,
    vendors and business associates.
    
Sage Software also today announced ACT! by Sage Premium for Workgroups 2006 for sales teams and corporate workgroups. ACT! Premium for Workgroups includes all ACT! 2006 features and additionally provides workgroup collaboration features, enhanced opportunity tracking, greater scalability, advanced administration and deployment. (See today's "ACT! Premium for Workgroups 2006" press release for further details.)

Sage Software today further announced over 40 new ACT! Add-on solutions now available to help users further extend their ACT! database functionality with marketing, shipping, mapping and synchronization capabilities, among others. (See today's "Sage Software Highlights Over 40 New Add-on Partner Solutions For Its New ACT! by Sage 2006 Product Family" press release for further details.)

ACT! 2006 -- for individuals and small teams of up to ten networked users, available at popular software retailers, e-tailers and direct resellers or by contacting Sage Software at 888-ACT-2006 or www.act.com/estore ($229.99 MSRP, upgrade $149.95 MSRP).

ACT! Premium for Workgroups 2006 -- for workgroups of up to 50 networked users(4) is available by contacting ACT! Corporate Licensing at 888-855-5222 and from more than 600 ACT! Certified Consultants located at www.act.com/certifiedconsultants ($399.99 MSRP, upgrade $259.95 MSRP).

ACT! Handheld Links -- ACT! 2006 and ACT! Premium for Workgroups 2006 each include ACT! Link for Palm OS and ACT! Link for Pocket PC to synchronize data with many popular handheld devices.

ACT! Add-on Solutions -- ACT! Add-on solutions extend database functionality to help businesses run more cost efficiently. A complete list of ACT! Add-on solutions and pricing is available at www.actsolutions.com. Developers interested in the ACT! Add-on Partner Program are encouraged to visit www.act.com/partners/addonpartners.

ACT! 2006 will also be available for purchase beginning in September at popular software retailers, e-tailers and direct resellers including Office Depot, CompUSA, Staples, Best Buy, OfficeMax, Fry's and Micro Center.

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 2.4 million small and mid-sized business customers in North America. Its parent company, The Sage Group plc (LSE: SGE.L), supports 4.5 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 www.sagesoftware.com/moreinfo or call (866) 308-2378.

(1) Requires Lotus Notes version 6.5.

(2) Please check www.act.com/products/accounting for version compatibility and availability dates.

(3) Citrix and Terminal Services require specific configurations. Citrix supported using Presentation Server V3.0 and V4.0.

(4) Actual number of users and contacts supported will vary based on hardware and size and usage of your database. The 50 user limit is based on performance tests using minimum hardware requirements and is a recommendation. You must purchase one license of ACT! per user.

© 2005 Sage Software SB, Inc. All rights reserved. The Sage Software logo and the Sage Software product and service names mentioned herein are registered trademarks or trademarks of Sage Software SB, Inc., or its affiliated entities. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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