Sage plans to replace the paper ledger in UK small businesses with the launch of a new accountancy software package. Designed for businesses with a turnover of up to #249,000, Instant Accounting '98 is the latest upgrade to Sage's Instant Accounting portfolio. The new version will ship later this week.
Sage hopes the package, priced at #99, will appeal to users who have not yet computerised their accounts. "Our research showed that the biggest competition in this market comes from paper and pencil," said Julia Wedgwood, Instant product manager at Sage. The product will also compete with established home accounts packages such as Microsoft Money and Intuit's Quicken. However, Sage's product is geared more to the business user, trading on the company's background in high-end corporate accounting systems. New features in the product include Instant '98 Tour, which provides the user with an overview of the package, and Task Manager, which issues reminders of overdue accounts and bills. Improved help includes new fact sheets in the product's on-line library, providing tips for options such as Year End calculations. Users can also draw up reports to identify their most valuable customers and suppliers. "The package is comprehensive, but easy to use," Wedgwood said. "It makes VAT calculations and banking transactions easier to manage. It also checks the business's performance against previous years and gives instant reports on cash flow - the first thing the bank manager will ask for." The software is Year 2000 compliant and is fully supported by Sage. Instant '98 is compatible with more complex Sage accounting software so small businesses can upgrade as they grow, Wedgwood explained. Sage: 0191 255 0620.
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