Another Sage Partner Selects SugarCRM

This morning brings an announcement that Kentucky based Oasis Solutions have taken on the open sourced SugarCRM customer relationship management software.

According to Oasis:

SugarCRM eliminates some of the hurdles previously associated with implementing CRM software, says Annette Manias, President of Oasis Solutions Group. “Because it’s cloud-based, our customers will be up and running quickly — no new hardware, network configuration, or technology upgrades required. Not only does that eliminate the up-front capital costs of implementation, but the price point of SugarCRM itself is a perfect match for the customers we serve.”
Adoption of CRM software is all part of a growing trend, Manias observes. “The acceptance of and demand for CRM today is a lot like what we saw with ERP systems almost two decades ago. And like ERP, CRM software has become a more accessible and strategic tool for businesses that are proactive and looking to become more efficient and effective.”

The concern here is that Oasis Solutions is a prominent Sage partner (although they are not totally dedicated to Sage – also reselling Microsoft Dynamics and QuickBooks) following on with earlier defections to SugarCRM announced by other prominent Sage partners Faye Business Solutions and Blytheco.

Sage already offers three CRM solutions of their own. They’re also in the midst of integrating their flagship Sage CRM squarely into their Sage 100 ERP (formerly Sage ERP MAS 90 and 200). During this push Sage is giving away a free server and user license of Sage CRM. Yet even a free server and workstation license appears to not be enough to keep Sage partners loyal.

Think about this. Free Sage CRM server and user license included with all Sage 100 ERP. Existing Sage partners choosing to take on another CRM.

Do these initial partner defections to competing CRM signal the start of a trend? In my opinion they foreshadow the beginning of a rocky road for Sage’s efforts to hold onto a quality channel — which until now has been largely loyal and sold primarily Sage products.

So far these defections have largely been limited to CRM. It’s likely in 2012 we are going to see a few defections of top Sage partners to SaaS offerings – that’s when things might get really interesting.

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  1. It seems like all the changes in the channel (particularly Sage) AND tech space (cloud, SaaS, etc) are forcing publisher loyalty to the backseat in favor of building a profitable and sustainable business. There’s no doubt the cheese has moved and some partners are choosing to move with it.