Sage is ramping up its CRM integration programme, but VARs are unconvinced by its plans.
Sage has claimed that half of its SalesLogix CRM software channel partners have signed up to its CRM integration programme, which equips resellers to integrate SalesLogix with back- office systems. Now Sage is looking to sign up more VARs, including those that do not specialise in SalesLogix software.
Partners that sign up are given the code that enables them to integrate SalesLogix to back-end software, as customers require it.
Lisa Enns, European marketing director at Sage, said end-users want integrated business applications, without the complexity, expense and overheads of building point-to-point connections.
"Partners can generate revenue from integration sales, consultancy around integration, as well as upgrades and new application sales," Enns said.
But Sage should concentrate on integrating its Mid-Market Solution (MMS) with its ACT! CRM software, according to Duncan Wyeth, sales and marketing director at Sage reseller Serion Logic. "It really could have a market-leading product then," he said.
Mike Lawrence, managing director of reseller Bentpenny, which recently had its agreement to sell ACT! terminated by Sage, said the vendor appears to be pushing SalesLogix at the expense of ACT!.
"I get the impression that Sage sees ACT! as a consumer product, and it wants to push products with bigger margins, such as SalesLogix," Lawrence said.
Another Sage reseller who wanted to remain anonymous, said Sage's biggest market is Line 100 and MMS. The VAR claimed that users of these products want CRM, but that Sage has failed to think through how to deliver it.
He claimed users that run MMS software will spend more on SalesLogix and the integration work than they had on the original accounting package.
"[Sage] is a bit like the Chelsea of software. It has spent all the money on buying pieces, but has failed to gel them together as a team," he said.
But Sage defended its position. "We have based this SalesLogix integration on nearly three years of experience of the integration framework for ACT!, which has been successful," said Andrew Boyd, Sage's European director of integration technologies.
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