SmartList Builder OEM

Announcement by Product Director and Founder – Martin OlsenContinuing from this time last year – I have another exciting announcement for the Dynamics GP community. 

From January 1st, 2014, eOne Solutions will terminate their OEM agreement with Microsoft for the supply of the SmartList Builder module and will exclusively test, develop, support and sell SmartList Builder. eOne Solutions is 100% committed to continue the development, enhancement, expansion and generally giving SmartList Builder all the love it deserves. We commit to all our loyal customers and partners a smooth transition process together with an improved, more flexible SmartList Builder product for you all to use.

In 2006, eOne granted Microsoft the rights to market, sell and support SmartList Builder via an OEM agreement, and under the name Microsoft Dynamics GP SmartList Builder. This has been a fantastic arrangement for the GP community and resulted in over 13,000 mid-market companies benefiting from using SmartList Builder on a daily basis.   
eOne continues to have a strong relationship with Microsoft which has been built over 8 years of working very closely together. Microsoft is supportive of this new direction and will actively continue to assist eOne in marketing activities and ensuring the GP community continues to benefit from SmartList Builder. Microsoft is also supportive and understanding of eOne’s need for more flexibility in its development direction.
eOne has always continued to develop, test and document SmartList Builder as well as provide marketing, sales, demonstration, presentation and support escalation services to Microsoft. Under the new arrangement the only difference is administrative – in that sales and renewals will be placed with eOne rather than Microsoft.

Why are these changes taking place?
There are a number of reasons behind eOne’s decision to discontinue the SmartList Builder OEM agreement. 
1. Development:Working within the OEM we were limited to Microsoft protocol as to additional functionality we were able to add to SmartList Builder. We are now able to move past those limits and be as creative as we like to be at eOne – to add all the functionality we dream up.
2. Mid-Market Customer Needs: Mid-Market companies use many software applications as part of their business systems – not just Dynamics GP. We have a great deal of demand from customers wanting to access NON GP data in their SmartLists. This will be one of the first new pieces of functionality you will see added to SmartList Builder.  
3. Web Client: With the release of a web client it was important for us to continue a world class offering to our clients. While SLB has been completely transitioned to the web client already – our broader strategy for SLB is tied to SmartView and the delivery of SmartView as a browser experience (without Web Client dependencies).
4. Mobile/Devices: iPads, Surfaces and SmartPhones are all part of our SmartList Builder strategy.
5. Success of Extender Transition: The transition of Extender back to eOne in 2013 has progressed smoothly. We have been inspired by the way partners are still actively selling Extender and as a result selling more Dynamics GP. We believe we can support our partners better and help them sell even more Dynamics GP by getting our hands in full control of SLB.
6. Tighter Integration: eOne is passionate about making ALL our products work together within the eOne stack. Inside the OEM agreement it was not possible to build in specific functionality to support non-OEM eOne products. We are now able to significantly improve the integrations between SmartList Builder, Extender, SmartConnect, SmartView and other upcoming eOne products.
7. Taking Control: As a business, eOne prides itself on being clever and creative, making strong decisions and acting on them rapidly. We are very proud of our internal systems, reporting and order processing portal for our partners. Relying on a company as large as Microsoft with inherently complex systems was an ongoing and unnecessary distraction.
8. Confused Direction: As an OEM partner – we were at times left in the dark when it came to understanding where the Microsoft corporate direction clashed with the local GP team’s vision. To ensure we were the masters of our own direction we needed full control over SmartList Builder including development, sales, marketing and promotions.
Why I thought this was a good idea and the best result for eOne, our customers and Microsoft.
1. Good for eOne: I’ll be honest – outside of the OEM we no longer have to share our revenue with Microsoft!
2. Good for Microsoft: The OEM agreement has really achieved it goals.  SmartList Builder sells with almost every new GP sale and is used widely by partners to differentiate Dynamics GP from other ERP solutions. There are more than 13,000 mid-market businesses relying on SmartList Builder every day. Microsoft GP resellers know SLB so well they will continue to use eOne’s SLB and Extender as a major differentiator to sell more GP (which is Microsoft’s goal). Microsoft will also benefit from new creative features that will ensure our partners can differentiate GP even further from its competitors. This results in more sales of GP.
3. Good for Resellers: SmartList Builder gets better, faster and easier to deploy and upgrade. The only difference is that AEP is paid to eOne and not Microsoft.
4. Good for Customers: Really no change at all for existing customers – other than the product will get better, faster.
As you can see this is a win/win situation for everyone. What do resellers need to do?

1. If you are already an eOne Reselling Partner, there really is nothing new for you to do. Microsoft will provide us with the list of your customers that currently own SmartList Builder. eOne will honor your current enhancement plans to completion. You will then renew your customers’ SLB enhancement plan with eOne rather than Microsoft. 
2. If you are not already an eOne reseller (not sure why you would not be) then you need to sign up with us as soon as possible. There is a $2,000 sign-on fee for partners, and this provides access to sell all eOne products and not just SLB. This means that as soon as you are signed up as a reseller you will be able to place orders and make AEP payments online via our website.  
What do SLB customers need to do? 
1. If you are currently a SmartList Builder customer then there is nothing you need to do at all. Sit back, keep using SmartList Builder, Excel Report Builder and all the good functionality you have available to you now.
The Good News
eOne and Microsoft are going to do everything to ensure this process is simple and seamless. Existing customers who are current on AEP will transition ‘free’. The product remains unchanged so you have no compatibility or upgrade issues. So really everything will remain ‘same old’ but you will find SLB continues to get better for you.

Over the next few months we will hold informational webinars regarding the process and will be able to answer any questions you may have. Keep an eye out for those sessions and be sure to sign up as they will have lots of time allotted to Questions and Answers. We will also discuss some exciting promotions available to all renewing customers.
Yours in Selling More Dynamics GP,