Microsoft buys public sector accounting technology

Microsoft Corp. has bought software products from partner Encore Business Solutions Inc. to strengthen its Great Plains offering in the public sector, it said Tuesday.

Microsoft is buying Encore's purchase order and cash flow management modules for Great Plains, which Microsoft sells today under a special license from Encore, as well as Encore's not-for-profit accounting suite, a Microsoft spokeswoman said in an e-mail interview.

As a result of the purchase, Microsoft's Great Plains 8.0, due out midyear, will include grant management and encumbrance management functionality, Microsoft said in a statement. Encumbrances are purchase orders or other commitments for goods that have not been provided, or for services that have not been performed.

Additionally, Microsoft is adding functionality from the Encore not-for-profit accounting suite to its existing intercompany, payables management and requisition management modules, the spokeswoman said.

Encore's products and Great Plains were developed using the same toolset and integration should not be too much of an issue, according to Microsoft. Current users of the Encore products will be supported by Microsoft, the Redmond, Washington-based vendor said.

Financial details of the deal with Encore, based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, were not disclosed.

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