SOURCE: Sage Software

August 31, 2005 09:00 ET

Sage Software Announces Nationwide Strategic Partnership With Association of Small Business Development Centers

Sage Software Certified Consultant Network Aligned to Offer Business Development Tools, Support and Training to Over 1.3 Million Small Business Entrepreneurs

SCOTTSDALE, AZ -- (MARKET WIRE) -- August 31, 2005 -- Sage Software today announced a nationwide strategic partnership with the Association of Small Business Development Centers (ASBDC). The partnership aligns Sage Software certified consultants with Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) nationwide to offer start-ups and growing businesses the management tools, training and support services that aid efficient business operations. The partnership also makes free 30-day trial CDs of Sage Software products including ACT! by Sage contact and customer management and Peachtree by Sage accounting solutions available for nearly 1,000 regional SBDCs providing assistance to over 1.3 million small business entrepreneurs annually.

"Small business is the engine of economic growth," said Don Wilson, president and CEO for the Association of Small Business Development Centers. "Growth requires nurturing and coordinated management. By partnering with organizations like Sage Software that have the management and operational needs of small businesses as its core focus, we significantly increase our ability to help lead SBDC clients to sustained success."

According to ASBDC, small business accounts for 99% of all U.S. businesses and employs 53% of the private work force to contribute over half of the nation's private gross domestic product. As an advocate for America's small business community, ASBDC offers one-on-one counseling to its member clients at no charge.

"Sage Software is all about helping people successfully manage their businesses during every phase of growth," stated Doug Meyer, president for Sage Software, Small Business Division. "Partnering with ASBDC is a natural. We share a commitment to support the hopes and dreams of entrepreneurs and small business teams with training, business management tools and localized consulting expertise, thereby encouraging local, state and national economic growth."

Sage Software is scheduled to conduct ACT! and Peachtree product demonstrations at ASBDC's 25th Anniversary Annual Conference September 6th through 9th at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel in Maryland.

"It is so easy to work with my local SBDC," noted Jennifer O'Brien of JCS Computer Resource, a Sage Software Certified Consultant. "They do the marketing, organize the students and set up training rooms. I use Sage Software user guides for training material and take along other Sage Software products, such as ACT! and Peachtree, that I believe will help students do more in less time. Recently, one student using QuickBooks switched to Peachtree because she found it provides better business information and is easier to use. Four other students also chose Peachtree. It turned out to be a winning partnership for everyone involved."

ACT! created the contact and customer management software category in 1987. Today, ACT! is the preferred choice of over 2.5 million users and more than 30,000 corporate license customers to help increase productivity by managing the appointments, activities, documents and notes/histories required for effective customer communications. ACT! helps individuals, small business and corporate workgroups improve bottom-line results by automating and customizing key aspects of the sales cycle to provide better forecasting and opportunity tracking. For more information call 888-855-5222 or visit www.act.com.

For nearly 30 years, Peachtree accounting products have served the needs of growing small businesses who rely on their accounting to give them the insight they need to make better business decisions. Peachtree helps small businesses efficiently manage and streamline their accounting and business management operations by providing powerful accounting with strong analysis tools and operations management features including tight integration with Microsoft Excel and comprehensive reporting functionality. For more information call 800-228-0068 or visit www.peachtree.com.

About ASBDC

The Association of Small Business Development Centers (ASBDC) was established as a public/private partnership by Congress in 1980 and is recognized by the federal government as the representative of America's Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) Network. The Small Business Development Center program is the most comprehensive small business assistance network in the nation and provides one-on-one counseling at no charge to its clients.

Over 1000 local SBDC offices provide entrepreneurial assistance to more than 1.3 million individuals a year. Hosted by colleges, universities, state governments, chambers of commerce and economic development agencies, SBDCs are funded by state and local partnerships to match U.S. Small Business Administration support. ASBDC represents the collective interests of its SBDC member offices by promoting, supporting and continuously improving the SBDC network so it can provide nationwide educational assistance to small and medium-sized businesses. For more information call 703-764-9850 or visit www.asbdc-us.org.

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.

© 2005 Sage Software SB, Inc. All rights reserved. ACT! and Peachtree are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sage Software SB, Inc. All other brands are trademarks of their respective companies.

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