Microsoft Tries to Bring

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2005-09-07 Print this article Print

Midmarket Customers What They Want"> "Our workflow and Business Intelligence capabilities have been really worked on in Office 12, and they will work out of the box as well as with some other ERP and CRM applications," Ballmer said. He pointed to Centro, a product in the Windows Longhorn Sever family under development, as an example of one that brought all of Microsofts experience with its Small Business Server product and in the small and midsize market space to bear.
"Centro does not look anything like the way I first conceptualized it when we started talking about the product," he said, noting that the final version was a result of in-depth research and customer feedback.
Ballmer said Microsoft would continue to invest in the partnerships and tools that would allow it to have a personalized connection with the more than 1 million customers in the midmarket space. The midmarket space will also be a great source of revenue growth for Microsoft, he said, but that doesnt mean higher prices for products geared towards these customers—rather, it means more products specifically designed to meet their needs and address their issues and challenges, Ballmer said. "I have spent more time trying to understand the midmarket customer segment than on any other customer group during my time at Microsoft," Ballmer said. When assessing this market, he said, "I started with the view that we have too many products that we are trying to sell to too few people in the midmarket. We have now come up with a solution that is a win for both of us and allows you to deliver more value to and through your businesses." Check out eWEEK.coms for Microsoft and Windows news, views and analysis.

Peter Galli has been a financial/technology reporter for 12 years at leading publications in South Africa, the UK and the US. He has been Investment Editor of South Africa's Business Day Newspaper, the sister publication of the Financial Times of London.

He was also Group Financial Communications Manager for First National Bank, the second largest banking group in South Africa before moving on to become Executive News Editor of Business Report, the largest daily financial newspaper in South Africa, owned by the global Independent Newspapers group.

He was responsible for a national reporting team of 20 based in four bureaus. He also edited and contributed to its weekly technology page, and launched a financial and technology radio service supplying daily news bulletins to the national broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, which were then distributed to some 50 radio stations across the country.

He was then transferred to San Francisco as Business Report's U.S. Correspondent to cover Silicon Valley, trade and finance between the US, Europe and emerging markets like South Africa. After serving that role for more than two years, he joined eWeek as a Senior Editor, covering software platforms in August 2000.

He has comprehensively covered Microsoft and its Windows and .Net platforms, as well as the many legal challenges it has faced. He has also focused on Sun Microsystems and its Solaris operating environment, Java and Unix offerings. He covers developments in the open source community, particularly around the Linux kernel and the effects it will have on the enterprise.

He has written extensively about new products for the Linux and Unix platforms, the development of open standards and critically looked at the potential Linux has to offer an alternative operating system and platform to Windows, .Net and Unix-based solutions like Solaris.

His interviews with senior industry executives include Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Linus Torvalds, the original developer of the Linux operating system, Sun CEO Scot McNealy, and Bill Zeitler, a senior vice president at IBM.

For numerous examples of his writing you can search under his name at the eWEEK Website at


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