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Microsoft To Turn Up Heat On Competitive IBM, Oracle Wins

The gloves are coming off in venues where Microsoft and partners face IBM Workplace or Websphere (and presumably Domino and Notes) in customer accounts, a Microsoft exec said Saturday.

Speaking at the company's Worldwide Partners Conference in Minneapolis, Simon Witts said.

Microsoft is ratcheting up competitive pressure to win vs. IBM and Oracle and is putting undisclosed amounts of money behind partners who can drive such bids. Witts is corporate vice president of Microsoft's enterprise and partner group.

While details were scarce, Witts said the company is especially eyeing accounts where Exchange Server can displace IBM/Lotus offerings and where market-leading Oracle databases could be replaced by SQL Server 2005, slated to officially launch in November.
More details on partner help in Oracle accounts will be disclosed closer to the Yukon launch, he said.

Witts said he'd been in Europe all week with Hewlett Packard, Avanade and other partners calling on customer accounts running Notes. "What was an internal offer now becomes external. For every situation where we engage on Notes, there will be a bounty per desktop that can be used as discount or for business investment," he noted without providing details. The amount, apparently will vary, based on the "depth of opportunity," he said.

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