Word on the high-tech street is that Microsoft is giving Serena Software its Business Productivity Online Standard Suite for free for three years, is migrating the company over from Google Apps for free and is providing a great discount on the overall enterprise agreement. Did anyone ever think the world would see Microsoft giving away software for free? Of course not, and that's why the idea sounds a little suspect. Find out how Microsoft won Serena back as a customer from Google Apps with BPOS.
Serena Software turned heads in 2008 when it announced it would replace Microsoft Exchange with Google's Gmail
application to save upward of $750,000.
That migration was completed
in March 2009 and Serena
was happy for a while. How a year changes things.
Microsoft swooped in this year and won Serena back as a customer
with its Business Productivity
Online Standard Suite, or BPOS-S.
Starting at $10 per user, per month, BPOS-S offers Web-based messaging and
collaboration software hosted by Microsoft, including Exchange Online, SharePoint
Online, Office Live Meeting and Office Communications Online. Serena had been
using Gmail and other Google collaboration applications through Google Apps,
which costs $50 per user, per year.
Word on the high-tech street is that Microsoft gave Serena BPOS for free for
three years, is migrating the company over for free and is providing a great
discount on the overall enterprise agreement as well.
Did anyone ever think the world would see Microsoft giving software away for
free? Of course not, and that's why the idea sounds a little suspect.
Perhaps Microsoft's strategy in the cloud collaboration market, where Google
has over 2 million business customers, a three-year head start and a solid
track record of satisfied customers,
is to give a little in the hope of
getting a lot of goodwill, if not new customers in the long run.
Microsoft declined to discuss terms of its arrangement with Serena and would
not make executives available for comment, beyond this statement from Tim
Rizzo, senior director of Microsoft Online Services: "Microsoft has the
expertise businesses trust and offers competitively priced solutions that
deliver proven results. When Serena Software required a collaboration platform
that provided enterprise-class support, security and reliability, Microsoft
responded. That is why Serena Software and the large majority of businesses
around the world are choosing Microsoft."
Ron Brister, director of IT for Serena Software, denied that Serena is using
BPOS for free. While he confirmed that Microsoft is helping Serena move from
Google Apps to BPOS and that Microsoft gave him a discount on Serena's
enterprise agreement, he declined to say how much of a discount or to discuss
the financial arrangements.