PRESS RELEASE – Macola Reseller Group Files Suit Against ECi Macola/MAX

Macola Reseller Group Files Suit Against ECi Macola/MAX for Antitrust and Other Violations

Suit says ECi is forcing unwanted services on clients and attempting to prevent competition 

COLUMBUS, Ohio. Nov. 9, 2018 – Macola Channel Partners and resellers recently filed a multi-count lawsuit against software developer ECi Macola/MAX, LLC, (“ECi”) alleging antitrust violations, tortious interference, breach of contract, and other claims.

On October 1st, 2018, resellers of Macola Software received a notification from ECi Software Solutions, Inc., the parent corporation of ECi Macola/MAX, that in the coming months it would be discontinuing its partner channel that had been running for more than 25 years. The notification also stated that customers would no longer be allowed to work with their reseller partners on ECi products in the future.

Macola resellers have for many years provided sales, support, and consulting services for users of Macola, an enterprise resource planning software system used primarily by small- to mid-sized businesses in manufacturing. According to the lawsuit, ECi has decided to cut out its former reseller partners and prevent them from offering support and consulting services to businesses using Macola. By preventing competition, the lawsuit says, ECi will create a monopoly for itself in the markets for support and consulting of Macola. The complaint contends that ECi is already exercising monopoly power over Macola users, forcing them to purchase services they do not want in exchange for continuing to receive routine Macola software updates.

According to the lawsuit, ECi is attempting to prevent competition by fraudulently telling Macola users that they will breach their software license agreement with ECi if they continue to do business with their reseller. At the same time, the complaint alleges, ECi is pressuring Macola users to sign new software license agreements that contain restrictive language that would prohibit Macola users from hiring anyone other than ECi to perform support or consulting on Macola software. In addition, the lawsuit claims that ECi has committed or threatened multiple breaches of its contract with the resellers, including cutting off earned commissions and other benefits under the contract.

On November 7th, 2018, a seasoned group of Macola resellers with hundreds of combined years of service, represented by the law firm Organ Cole LLP, filed suit against ECi in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, alleging that ECi’s conduct constitutes breach of contract, tortious interference, unfair competition, and violates state and federal antitrust law.

“It’s a daunting task for a handful of small businesses to take on ECi’s millions, but we made a promise to help our customers grow their businesses and we’ve become an integral partner with those companies,” said Michael Oswalt, CEO of Algorithm, Inc., one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit.

“We believe every customer is valuable,” agreed Jeff DeSchon, Vice President of iPro, another of the plaintiffs. “We will continue to serve them, and we will protect our employees and their families. That is why we’ve taken this action.”

Chuck Wise, President of another plaintiff in the lawsuit, Copious Solutions, added, “We believe that our customers should carefully review any new contract documents put in front of them by ECi, including click-through documents and sales order footnotes, and seek legal counsel where appropriate.”

Currently pending before the court is the Macola resellers’ request for a temporary restraining order. If that request is granted, the order would prevent ECi both from telling Macola customers that they are prohibited from doing future business with the resellers and from requiring customers to purchase unwanted services as a condition of receiving software updates.

You can find a copy of the complaint here and a copy of the motion for a temporary restraining order here.

We encourage your feedback. Comments or questions may be sent to ECiMacolaSuit@algorithminc.com

This email address will be forwarded to the resellers as a group.

If you would rather, address your feedback to me directly at jmayer@new.mayererp.com

Strategies to Automate Your Business Processes

Wouldn’t it be great if you could run your business on autopilot? All of the human capital that goes into producing your product would be automated. Most small to medium-sized businesses spend thousands to millions of dollars each year on manual labor to carry out their business processes.

Of course you are going to need people to run your business, but where many businesses go wrong is when they do not take advantage of the technology that is available to them. Macola, for example, offers extremely intelligent business software systems that eliminate the need for so many employees. If you wish to set your business on autopilot, a software system like Macola ERP solutions may be a great choice to consider.

Consider, also, the competition and its effect on your bottom line. With so many similar businesses, not to mention large companies, to compete with in the marketplace, your enterprise must stay on top of the market and get an edge over other companies that offer similar products. A great way to do that is to upgrade to smart business software that can complete many tasks and lower your business overhead.

Macola ERP Solutions is designed with Business Process Management capabilities. Your partner works with the business to determine needs and then design a system to assist or totally accommodate those requirements. Macola’s software can cover almost all aspects of your business needs. The software contains applications that are designed to complete tasks in accounting, manufacturing, distribution, HR, document management, CRM, and much more.

Macola applications are designed for exceptional accuracy and efficiency. Using Macola ERP Solutions, your company can have a single human resources employee instead of an entire team doing busywork.

Instead of hiring an IT team to create applications for your business, you could simply have one IT employee to run software and train new employees. Macola’s programs are already designed to complete common business tasks, and with a partner who can handle custom solutions, there is less need for an IT department.

Accounting can benefit from automation as well. Macola software is capable of completing tasks such as writing and sending invoices, sending late payment notices, sending non-payment notices, auto-detects, automatic e-mail reminders, accounts receivable and accounts payable tasks, and more. The business automation solution can handle workflow processes, triggers, and has an event manager. Almost all common tasks that burn the majority of employee’s work time can be automated to allow them to handle more important and complex duties throughout the day.

The technology is here and the small investment for a business to purchase software like Macola ERP Solutions is definitely a smart move. Get an edge over your competition and lower your overhead costs by purchasing Macola software through a trusted partner.

Should I Purchase my ERP or Rent it?

Should I buy or rent my ERP?

Enterprise resource planning software is more essential than ever before, and if you want to gain an edge over your competitors, you must ensure that you are making the most out of your systems. For small to medium sized businesses, Midsize Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software is a worthy upgrade from less encompassing programs like QuickBooks. However, using ERP software involves a number of decisions, such as determining whether renting on a monthly basis or if purchasing is best for your business. Here are a few tips for choosing whether to rent or buy your ERP software.

 

Which is Cheaper?

Ultimately, one option will be more cost effective for your particular business in the long run, and saving money on software gives you the flexibility to spend elsewhere. If you know which package you want to purchase and want to commit for the long term, it may be best to buy it outright. When you buy, you own your system and your data. Typically you get a return for your investment within 5 years. When you pay a monthly fee for a SaaS based solution, your data is hosted in the cloud environment and you pay a recurring monthly fee. The convenience of a rented solution is not dealing with, worrying about, purchasing or maintaining infrastructure. To answer which path is cheaper, compare cost over 5 years. In most cases, purchased solutions end up being the less expensive alternative.

 

Is Flexibility Important?

By renting your ERP software, there are limits to customizations. For those new to ERP, having the ability report on data from within the system is crucial. Having the ability to add custom reporting fields is a benefit of a purchased solution. Work with an experienced provider who can assess your needs and determine which system works best for your organization.

 

Are there options?

The software economy is moving toward a model where applications tend to be rented or cloud based. However, a one time capital expenditure may be more suited for companies that prefer not to commit to a monthly fee. If you are interested in taking advantage of a cloud solution, purchased solutions can be placed in a hosted environment and you won’t have to worry about infrastructure expenses.

 

The Right Size For You

ERP software is valuable for businesses of all sizes, as it allows owners and managers to focus on what they do best instead of dealing with financial nuances and logistics. However, it is important to choose the right package for you and decide whether it is best to make a one-time purchase and maintain a program, or rent it and pay ongoing costs.

Using a Software Reseller

Software resellers provide a number of benefits to businesses– especially when compared to buying directly from the distributor. When using a software reseller, the client is able to interact with a smaller company; this makes getting customer support and assistance easier, especially when the company is heavily focused on providing customers with the support that they require regardless of the type or size of purchase that they made.

Support for newly purchased software is fundamentally important for businesses of all sizes, and purchasing from a software reseller is one of the primary ways to ensure that a business receives the support necessary to avoid interruptions to organizational procedure as a new piece of software or system is integrated into the overall framework of the organization.  It can also help a business understand better the software they are purchasing– this can help newer, smaller businesses avoid costly mistakes when first looking for software solutions to common business problems.

Some resellers even offer higher value points to their customers: these resellers are known as  “Value Added Resellers,” or VAR.  These resellers offer the same benefits as other software resellers, but they can sometimes specialize software even more for the client or customer, essentially building the perfect platform for a business from the generic software platform provided by the software company.  

Building company-specific systems helps streamline business processes regardless of the market niche; it provides organizations with more freedom to explore other business options as well, because of the specialized nature of the software. The Mayer Group provides both software resale services and VAR software resale services to organizations in a number of different fields, as well as an in-house, U.S.-based customer support solutions for businesses of all shapes and sizes.