Mark Hickman, Managing Director at Sage Canada, reviewed the recent news items of particular significance for the Canadian market, and noted some additional changes coming next year.
It has been a good year for Sage Canada. The company has rolled out new products, some of which are Canadian-specific. That has helped the company post a strong bottom line for the fiscal year that just closed.
“The Canadian business had its end of year in September, and we almost doubled our growth,” said Mark Hickman, Managing Director at Sage Canada. “We believe strongly that the Canadian economy is the place to be.This year at Sage Canada we are launching a lot of new products, and have already brought a lot of these new products to market.”
Sage Intacct, Sage’s born-in-the cloud offering, received several upgrades, with the most important for the Canadian market being a new French capability.
“Sage Intacct is our flagship medium business product, and has been doubling year over year in sales.” Hickman said. “The product’s latest release included the ability to deliver it in French, with the user being able to toggle between English and French. It just came out and we have already closed our first deal.”
The French version has been made for both the metropolitan French and Canadian French markets.
“It has been made for both markets, although we may add some more French Canadian terms going forward,” Hickman said. “It’s not that we haven’t sold any Intacct in Quebec, but that market is mainly French – and there are other areas with a large French population. We have a very successful business in Quebec overall, and now we have all of our products available there in both French and English.”
Sage shares the midmarket with its older Sage 300 product.
‘Intacct doesn’t service all verticals,” Hickman said. “Sage 300 is more mature although it is not cloud native like Intacct. Some verticals will fit better with one than the other, although we aggressively sell both.”
Other enhancements to Intacct include automatic rollup consolidation for complex partial ownership structures, a new Bank Transaction Assistant for improved reconciliation, deeper project intelligence, simplified inventory fulfillment, and options to integrate Sage Intacct Construction Financials and Sage Intacct Payroll Powered by ADP.
“We have also announced our Transform event for Intacct at the end of February. February 26 to 29 in Las Vegas. where we are expecting thousands of customers,” Hickman said.
Sage also announced the launch of Sage Construction Management in Canada.
“This is the Canadian launch,” Hickman said. “We have been selling the U.S. version, with Canadian taxation features. and have been very successful with that in North America. This is for construction management to help those companies run their business. and it opens a new market for us. It is targeted from Sage 50 right through Intacct. Before, even though we lacked the Canadian tax data, it is a very flexible program and we have very skilled partners and they could customize certain fields. It was a configuration play rather than coding. Now, however, it is all out of the box in Canada. As noted earlier, it is also offered with Sage Intacct Construction Financials as an end-to-end suite.
Also available now in Canada, in partnership with ADP, is Sage Intacct Payroll. This solution has been available in the US market since June 2022.
Sage has also launched Sage HR for Sage 50 in Canada and the U.S. The industry-first solution delivers powerful integration between accounting, HR and payroll processes, allowing teams to be more agile and keep up with the demands of a modern workforce.
“This powerful HR integration into Sage 50 will let them do a lot of simple features out of the box,” Hickman stated. “Because the functionality lets you build it out and scale it, it is great for companies with 1 to 5 employees up. We have Sage 50 customers with hundreds of employees.” The Sage HR integration is available exclusively to Sage 50 customers with a Payroll service plan.
Sage also just announced the imminent upgrading of their Canadian offices in Toronto, ON and Vancouver, BC.
“This will deliver a world class experience to employees,” Hickman said. The Toronto office is moving from University Avenue to Scotia Plaza at the corner of Bay and King, while the Vancouver office is moving from Richmond downtown to the Waterfront Hub at 601 Hastings St.Both moves are planned for early fall of 2024.
“The Toronto office is bigger, while the Vancouver one is a little smaller but more efficiently spaced,” Hickman noted.
Finally, Sage has released a new report, Cybersecurity for SMBs: Navigating Complexity and Building Resilience. The global report reveals that keeping on top of new threats is the biggest cybersecurity challenge facing SMBs today, followed by ensuring employees understand cybersecurity expectations, educating staff about cybersecurity and thinking about the investment required. For Canadian SMBs, staying ahead of new threats is their biggest cybersecurity challenge (51%), in addition to the cost (41%), and educating staff about cybersecurity and knowing what cybersecurity they need in place for their organization (40%). The top five types of cyber breaches impacting Canadian SMBs include data loss (20%), Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attacks (19%), stolen laptops (18%), ransomware attacks (16%) and credential theft (14%).
“We build security into all our products,” Hickman said. “Overall, 25% of SMBs had cyberincidents in the last year, 29% in Canada. 46% said they would increase the spending on cybersecurity, while only 10% would decrease it. We are also seeing good knowledge in cybersecurity among SMBs, but not as high as in the enterprise.”