Sage Pastel's channel launch

Sage Pastel's channel launch

Sage Pastel is encouraging resellers to become partners.

Sage acquired South African company Softline Pastel in 2003 in a bid to gain a dominant presence in the southern hemisphere as part of an international expansion outside its established UK and European markets.

Now known as Sage Pastel, the company’s goal is to become the number one SME solution provider of financial solutions in the southern hemisphere.

Passage Software director Daymon Yin, Sage Pastel New Zealand director Geof Nightingale and Sage Pastel international director Jeff Lewis hosted a series of roadshows in November to explain the new brand.

Sage Pastel launched to its business partners this October with three new accounting software packages: Partner, Evolution and Xpress.

The company operates a three-tier model and business partners work with resellers to market and develop products. Lewis says Sage Pastel has 75 business partners and over 400 resellers internationally.

Resellers are offered three levels of partnership: gold, partner or referrer and must undergo training to become a credited reseller.

All current Sage resellers automatically join the franchise as gold members. They pay no initial joining fee but $1,000 annually to receive a 35% product discount. Partners and referrers pay a lesser annual fee and get 25% and 10% discounts respectively.

Lewis estimates there are 40,000 Sage users in Australasia and over five million globally and says the discount resellers are offered on products “make Tech Pac weep”.

“The model is very attractive to prospective resellers. We have a very nice range of products and services on a global scale. So far, the model has worked exceptionally well. We’ve seen some of our business partners start from a small two-man band and grow to expand into numerous reseller opportunities,” he says.

Nightingale says the next step for Sage Pastel New Zealand is to educate resellers through its own training centre.

“There’s a lot of work going into maintaining customer continuity. The new products are a lot easier to use. The software is very cost-effective and takes advantage of the latest technology.”

Yin says the change has upset some resellers, but most are positive about the opportunities.

“People have to get to know and trust the new setup. Some are uncomfortable with change and the roadshows are about allaying their fears,” he says.

Yin and Nightingale promise resellers 24-hour back-up support.

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