Rogers partners with Google, Microsoft to launch app store for small businesses

Rogers Communications Inc. knows that many of today’s small businesses rely on cloud-based apps such as Microsoft Office 365 and Google Apps for Work to run their operations – and that they have few IT staff to support them.

Enter the newly-launched Rogers Business App Market, an app store that not only provides the Canadian telecommunications giant’s small-and medium-sized business (SMB) clients with a library of applications they can combine into a single SaaS-like subscription, but includes technical support as well.

“Many of our customers today are stretched thin, having to spend hours of time managing business applications,” Craig Bentley, Rogers’ senior vice-president of small enterprise, said in a statement announcing the app store’s release today. “We want to make it simple and easy to use business applications.”

The first two apps available through the Market will be the aforementioned Google Apps for Work and Microsoft Office 365, with the Canadian telecommunications giant stating in its Sept. 7 release that “a number of new productivity applications” will be added “in the coming months.”

According to Rogers’ own internal research, the average Canadian small business now relies on approximately five cloud applications to run key services including email, payroll, accounting, and scheduling, and has “limited or no dedicated IT staff,” the company says.

To make setting up and using business apps easier for customers, the App Market will include end-to-end support, including employee training and application administration services.

Rogers clients will also be able to pay for any apps purchased on the same bill they use to pay for other services from the company.

Finally, the platform includes a single universal ID that customers and their employees can use to gain access to all of their cloud services.

In the Sept. 7 release, Microsoft Canada and Google representatives both said they looked forward to working with Rogers, adding that the company would be able to effectively deliver their services to a wider range of clients than before at a reasonable cost.

You can learn more about Rogers’ Business App Market here.

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Eric Emin Wood
Eric Emin Wood
Former editor of turned consultant with public relations firm Porter Novelli. When not writing for the tech industry enjoys photography, movies, travelling, the Oxford comma, and will talk your ear off about animation if you give him an opening.

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