Another move to snare customers in a tough market
Through Jan. 31, the Mountain View, Calif., financial software maker will offer a 20% discount to customers who switch from Sage MAS 90 or BusinessWorks Accounting to Intuit's midmarket accounting and ERP software, QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions.
Sage, maker of Peachtree and other releated software, already had a similar promotion aimed at QuickBooks users, offering its Sage MAS 90 starting at $207 per month with 0% financing, according to its Web site.
Intuit's salvo is the latest in a price war in the ERP and customer relationship management software market.
In October, NetSuite Inc. started a program called RenewForce, through which it offers to swap customers' Salesforce.com Inc. service for NetSuite's CRM+ service for half the price of a Salesforce.com license. NetSuite is also offering customers up to 100 hours of professional services to aid in the transition.
In November, Microsoft Corp. said it would be offering qualified buyers of its Dynamics ERP and CRM software zero-percent financing for 36 months through mid-March.
Analysts say that users should expect more discounting and bargains thanks to the economic downturn and strong competition in the ERP and CRM markets.
Intuit's QuickBooks Enterprise is already cheaper than rival packages, and that helped the vendor win 5,000 customers who had switched to QuickBooks Enterprise from rival products in the past year, an Intuit spokesman said. QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions starts at $3,000 for five users.
QuickBooks Enterprise has 57,000 customers, mostly small- to midsize businesses. Intuit has 4 million QuickBooks users, including those using its Pro and Premier versions.
The company is taking other steps in a campaign that seems to be based on the philosophy that the best defense is a good offense.
In September, Intuit released a trio of Web-hosted CRM applications that complement QuickBooks Enterprise and compete against offerings from Salesforce.com, NetSuite and Microsoft, all of which have targeted QuickBooks users in the past.
By Eric Lai