Responding to increased user demands for a structured reseller program for its QuickBooks Enterprise Solution, and to ease the transition from other accounting software packages,

Intuit Inc. is launching the QuickBooks Enterprise Solution Provider Program.

Under the program, accredited resellers will receive discounts of up to 25 percent on QBES business management software, in addition to commissions for sales bundled with professional services. Membership in the channel program is limited to QuickBooks Enterprise certified advisors with "significant" experience in assisting clients in the mid-market sector. Current QuickBooks advisor partners receive a 15 percent discount.

News of the program was officially released at the inaugural QuickBooks Enterprise User Conference, held in early June in Phoenix.

The program will provide marketing, support, training and lead-generation tools to help QBES channel partners locate potential customers, as well as work with current QuickBooks Enterprise users.

To lead the new channel, Intuit tapped Jim Gregg as director. Gregg has a 15-year background in developing and managing channel strategies.

Bruce Andersen, a Woodland Hills, Calif.-based sole practitioner, welcomed the program. A CPA who was already selling QBES, Andersen noted that the product has primarily been sold over the phone. "At a certain point, inside sales can't do it," he said, adding that customers need support and training and the local presence that a reseller can provide.

A database of QBES ProAdvisors will be compiled, so that customers can search for an advisor without having to research the ProAdvisor roster for the entire portfolio of QuickBooks products.

To create the program, Intuit collaborated with a steering committee of software resellers and QuickBooks ProAdvisors.

Applicants for the new program must be ProAdvisors of QBES. Bill Lucchini, vice president of Intuit's mid-market group, said that there will be a cap on the number of advisors allowed to enter into the program, though that number has not yet been set.

At the Phoenix confab, Intuit also unveiled a 20-user version of QuickBooks Enterprise. This expanded product allows for a choice of five, 10, 15 and 20 concurrent users.

The five-user version is priced at $3,000. The 20-seat upgrade will be $7,500 for new users and $6,750 as an upgrade.

"We were surprised by how many customers came from the mid-market and said they needed more help when converting from another system," said Lucchini. "They really want expert help when doing their data conversion. We have 60,000 ProAdvisors and developers using our software development kit."

For more information on the pilot provider program, visit www.quickbooksenterprise.com/solutionprovider.

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