Cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools enable nonprofits to streamline IT and focus on social impact
REDMOND, Wash. — September 10, 2013 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the global availability of Office 365 for Nonprofits for qualifying nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) through its software donation program. The donation is available today in 41 countries around the world and up to 90 countries by July 2014.
“Today we are donating to nonprofits and NGOs access to Microsoft’s best-in-class cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools, enabling them to spend fewer resources and time on IT and focus on their missions addressing global issues, such as disease eradication, education and literacy, and environmental sustainability,” said Jean-Philippe Courtois, president, Microsoft International. “Nonprofits operate in the same way as any other organization or business, however many lack the resources to implement the latest technology. The donation of Office 365 allows them to be more effective and efficient in the work they do.”
In a study by Microsoft’s software donation partner TechSoup Global, nonprofits reported that the top four advantages of cloud computing are easier IT administration (79%), cost-savings (62%), improved collaboration (61%), and data security (54%). Given the increasing challenges facing nonprofits around the world, it’s more important than ever to make sure they can access the advantages of cloud computing and drive even more social change in the world.
“In many of the countries served by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), connectivity can be unreliable and equipment disproportionately expensive. Our Digital Divide Initiative aims to build professional capacity across our global network and help Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies that work in challenging environments to introduce technologies, such as cloud-based email servers, which are suited to their needs,” said Edward Happ, global chief information officer, IFRC. “Building on this, we’ve made available Office 365 as our cloud-based solution. The technology just works; it helps people do what they need to do. This means that the time and energy of the National Society is devoted to helping the vulnerable, not to managing their IT systems. It makes a real difference to humanitarian delivery at minimum cost.”
Office 365 for Nonprofits provides nonprofits and NGOs access to Microsoft’s always up-to-date Office cloud service, tailored to the needs of nonprofits, including:
· Ability to access information from virtually anywhere: Office 365 for Nonprofits increases an organization’s ability to work from anywhere with access to documents and files by using Office applications optimized for use across PCs, smartphones and tablets.
· Collaborate easily: Nonprofits are easily able to work together across an organization by using familiar Office applications with email, shared calendar, document sharing, and video conferencing.
· Easy IT implementation: Office 365 for Nonprofits includes access to easy-to-use admin controls and the ability to install Office without uninstalling previous versions.
· Reliable and up-to-date: Office 365 for Nonprofits allows organizations to spend less time on IT maintenance, while providing access to always up-to-date technology that is simple and easy to use. And Office 365 for Nonprofits is financially backed by industry-leading security features and a 99.9% uptime guarantee.
“Microsoft has a long-standing history of philanthropy, providing nonprofits with software donations and cash grants for the past 30 years,” said Lori Harnick, general manager, Citizenship & Public Affairs, Microsoft. “Office 365 for Nonprofits is a new, critical investment Microsoft is making into the global nonprofit community so nonprofits can streamline their IT and focus on doing more good.”
Microsoft’s donation of Office 365 for Nonprofits is part of the company’s 30-year history of community support. In fiscal year 2013 alone, Microsoft donated $795 million (FMV) in cash, software and services to 70,286 nonprofits in more than 115 countries around the world.
Nonprofits and NGOs interested in implementing Microsoft Office 365 can check eligibility and order donations at http://www.microsoft.com/office365nonprofits. Migration information and resources can be found at http://fasttrack.office.com.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
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“Digging,” the first poem in his first collection, “The Death of a Naturalist,” described his father digging potatoes and his grandfather digging turf. The last lines seemed to set down his personal manifesto:
The cold smell of potato mould, the squelch and slap
Of soggy peat, the curt cuts of an edge
Through living roots awaken in my head.
But I’ve no spade to follow men like them.
Between my finger and my thumb
The squat pen rests.
I’ll dig with it.
By Shawn Tully, senior editor-at-large August 19, 2013: 8:51 AM ET
What a rigorous metric called "EVA" says about the value of stocks. Hint: it ain’t pretty.
FORTUNE — Forget P/Es. Trailing, forward, westward, or eastward, the venerable price-earnings ratio tells you little more about the value of a company than its marketing budget. Or (ugh!) its "consensus analyst rating."
The best measure of how companies perform for shareholders is a wonkish tool called Economic Value Added, or EVA. The advantage of EVA is that it corrects the gap, so to speak, in regular GAAP accounting by gauging what’s really important: whether shareholders are getting returns superior to what they’d garner putting their money in another, equally risky stock or index fund.
According to EVA, a company only truly enriches investors when it exceeds the return that the market already expects from similar stocks. When it beats that bogey, it’s truly making money for you. When it falls short, it’s a loser — even if its official earnings numbers look good.
EVA’s big innovation is imposing a charge for all the capital that companies deploy to generate profits. Under GAAP, an auto or soft drink manufacturer can keep raising earnings per share by piling cash into expensive acquisitions or modestly profitable new plants. Sure, the interest on the debt used for those investments gets lopped off earnings. What’s deceiving is that companies pay no charge for their biggest source of capital: the equity raised from shareholders and invested on their behalf in retained earnings. That’s money you could put somewhere else and earn interest on it. So shareholders should make sure they’re being properly compensated for that investment.
EVA presents the real picture of that shareholder compensation by placing a stiff fee — equal to the prevailing cost-of-capital — on every dollar of equity sitting on the company’s balance sheet. In the EVA mindset, the only true profit is "economic profit," the cash generated after paying the full capital charge. Generating EVA is like shooting under par, or at least beating your handicap, in golf. It’s a mark of superior performance. And producing big, consistent gains in EVA is the driver and hallmark of great stocks, from Wal-Mart (WMT) to Amazon (AMZN).
The consulting firm Stern Stewart pioneered EVA in the 1990s, winning such devotees as legendary Coca-Cola (KO) chief Roberto Goizueta. Firm co-founder Bennett Stewart now champions EVA as CEO of EVA Dimensions, which sells software and data that companies use to do this rigorous valuation analysis, and produces original equity research for big institutional money managers.
So what does EVA say about the stock market now? Well, it ain’t pretty.
Read the full article at http://finance.fortune.cnn.com/2013/08/19/stocks-valuation-eva/