Redmond, Wash. (Dec. 19, 2003) -- Microsoft is readying a line of the applications that customize its desktop applications for specific lines of business aimed at helping companies comply with Sarbanes-Oxley requirements.
Slated for a March 2004 release, Office Accelerator for Sarbanes-Oxley will be the latest in Microsoft's Office Accelerator program. These include an Office 2003 Accelerator for proposal management and an Office Accelerator that helps format financial documents in Extensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL).

 “Current regulations under the new Sarbanes-Oxley law mandate that all publicly traded companies file certain reports and statements before Dec. 31, 2004,” said Robert Bernard, director of program management in Microsoft’s information worker new markets group. “Microsoft’s goal is to meet customer needs in a low-cost, high-quality way and we saw that we could help meet compliance needs by building a new tool on a foundation of existing products that many of our customers have already licensed -- or will want to license for multiple reasons.”

Office Accelerators are packages of software components, templates, and sample architectures that allow customers and integrators create custom applications. They are provided free to customers that have software assurance licenses for the various applications engaged by each accelerator. For example, to use Office Solution Accelerator for Sarbanes-Oxley, a customer would need SA licenses for Windows SharePoint Services and Microsoft Office InfoPath 2003.

Microsoft is a relative latecomer to the Sarbanes-Oxley compliance market. Since the regulation became law in 2002 a growing software vendors have come forward with their own products in an attempt to aid compliance with the Act.

— WebCPA staff

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