Esolutions, the marketing alliance between Telecom, EDS and Microsoft, has entered the ASP market and will rent Microsoft applications and a payroll system over the Internet.
The ASP business is being launched under the eOffice brand name next week and offers Microsoft Office 2000 and Microsoft Exchange 5.5 at $155 per user per month.
E-office is hosted behind the esolutions Safecom environment which provides secure access options and backup and recover services.
“We’ve done a lot of work on the pricing and looked around the world and we know it’s compelling,” says esolutions general manager Jane Freeman.
EDS is hosting the applications. Telecom, EDS and Microsoft resellers will sell e-Office and customer deals will be signed with Telecom or EDS. The companies partnered in July last year and launched the esolutions name in February.
Also on offer is a payroll solution, Nett Pay, developed by Datacom and rentable for $5 an employee a pay. Aimed at small to medium-sized businesses, Nett Pay connects directly to the Inland Revenue Department and banks.
Auckland-based Southfresh, a perishable goods broker which uses e-commerce to connect suppliers to large-scale buyers, is using Nett Pay after making the switch from a manual system. The nine-employee company expects to grow to 30 over the next few months and general manager Trevor Crawford says he prefers to use a Net-based system as it can be maintained and updated easily.
Six customers are now signed up for the service, four hiring Microsoft applications and two for Nett Pay. This doesn’t include ASB Bank which is trialling Office through esolutions.
Esolutions brand manager Sue McCarty says it has had to develop its product to meet the bank’s requirements regarding the process and rigour around security; realignment between the applications and the bank’s network due to complex mapping requirements; and storing data within the bank’s own system instead of the ASP host environment. ASB Bank has yet to sign as a customer to the service.
Meanwhile, esolutions is talking to local software developers as it scouts around for other applications to offer through its service. The “virtual company” now has 65 staff gleaned from Telecom, Microsoft and EDS, and will be moving into one building in September. However, Freeman says it won’t be turned into a legal entity in the near future.