Sage and Microsoft could team up to provide online product

MICROSOFT AND SAGE are reportedly in talks to form an alliance which could see the duo rollout online-based accountancy software.

The deal could see Sage transfer its accountancy software products to the US company’s Azure online (or cloud) platform, the Financial Times reports.

The move could alleviate criticism that Sage has faced in recent years, that is late to the game in offering online products.

In January 2011 the FTSE 100 business launched Sage One, a cloud product that allowed accountants and clients access to company data. However, that product was not rolled out in the US, which has the most rapid take-up of internet based software.

It claims that it has about 1,000 cloud customers, a minor percentage of the 6.3m customer base.

Earlier this year the company announced its customers would receive an updated version of online tax software iXBRL. The software allows users to tag financial information and was made mandatory by HM Revenue & Customs on 1 April 2011.

Sage was heavily criticised at the time for failing to provide customers with the full tagging requirements by the deadline.

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