February 9, 2004 9:01 AM PST

Microsoft rings up retail software deal

Microsoft on Monday announced it has signed agreements with resellers ScanSource and Tech Data to distribute its software geared for high-tech cash registers.

The so-called point-of-sale (POS) product is designed for retailers that garner up to $5 million in annual revenue at each store, as well as companies with 100 or more stores. Until now, resellers could get the Retail Management System software only from Microsoft directly.

Under the deal, ScanSource and Tech Data will be able to offer customers extra benefits and options for ordering and support, according to Microsoft. Both resellers expect to have a broader partner reach that will enable them to attract more retailers, the software giant said.

Microsoft and other large tech companies have stepped up their efforts to reach out to the retail segment, offering new services and software options. Recently, Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft signed a deal to let existing users of HP's POS hardware join Microsoft's Smarter Retailing Initiative.

"The agreements reflect a deep commitment to serving our ecosystem of business partners by expanding the options they have for distribution," Jeff Riley, general manager of retail product management at Microsoft Business Solutions, said in a statement.


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