IT News in Brief – 14 January

Slow software eats at profits

A survey of 50 accountants and finance staff by Exchequer Software estimated the average accounts department wastes 390 hours a year due to slow software. Three-quarters of the respondents used accounts software for more than six hours a day and spent about one-and-a-half hours waiting for files to print or reports to finish. The delays equated to #4,000 annually in lost productivity.

New program for CTSA Group A firm Baker Tilly has signed a contract to use the TCSL Alphatax program for its corporate tax work. After a rigorous review, the new program was selected for its ability to process returns for the new corporate taxation self-assessment regime, according to national IT partner Richard Spooner. Alphatax ousted Taxsoft at Baker Tilly and the software company predicts more mid-tier firms will follow. JBA sells US hardware division Birmingham-based ERP software company JBA Holding sold its North American computer solutions division in December to Avent of Phoenix. The sale price was based on a multiple of post-tax earnings for 1998 and was capped at $24m (#14m). A spokesman said the sale would allow JBA to commit more money to its core ERP business, where margins are higher than hardware.

WorldPay gets the Net trade UK companies trading on the Internet can join the first wave of countries doing business in euros through electronic payment specialist WorldPay. Companies can use WorldPay’s euro-compliant products to trade over the Net and take advantage of WorldPay’s free interactive website (, which went live on 1 January. The site automatically calculates a company’s foreign currency invoices via the euro. Merchants already trading on the Web with WorldPay include Guinness and Creation Records.

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