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SugarCRM and its global partners gathered in Munich for the first annual Global Partner Summit. The successful two-day summit gave SugarCRM systems integrators, value-added resellers, and key technology partners a chance to share success stories, learn about the latest Sugar-powered technology and compare notes on how to help companies create extraordinary customer relationships.

Over the course of the two-day event, a few themes emerged. One, as evidenced by CEO Larry Augustin, is that CRM is still a “large, under-penetrated market.” While CRM is a mature technology, there are a number of factors that continue to drive opportunity and innovation in this sector. And CRM has never been hotter in the social era! The ever-expanding mid-market segment and their increased understanding of the need for CRM is also helping to fuel the market. Additionally, the replacement market for older products is opening up large opportunity for SugarCRM and its partners as well.

In addition to the overall opportunity, a few high-level technology and business trends are working in the SugarCRM partner network’s favor. On the larrygpstechnology side, the prevailing item is the fact that organizations are beginning to evolve their take on what “the cloud” truly means and how it can facilitate their customer-facing initiatives. First and foremost, companies of all types are getting smarter about cloud and are looking for more flexible solutions that help them leverage cloud tools—but without the harsh limitations of older SaaS offerings.

On the business front, opportunity abounds for SugarCRM and its partners as all kinds of businesses look to alter their CRM strategy in “the age of the customer.” Previous perspectives on CRM were both internally focused on the company and applications focused on management. Modern CRM tools, deployed by CRM expert partners, can help organizations better understand their customers throughout the customer journey, and also delight internal users with far more useful tools than the CRM offerings of yesterday could ever provide. That’s a massive win-win.

Of course, it was not all work in Munich (and how could it be during Oktoberfest?) – as it is well known that SugarCRM has some of the most fun loving, energetic partners on the planet. Evening events, such as a traditional Bavarian feast at the Hacker-Pschorr brewery in the heart of Munich (which turned more into a modern disco by night’s end) helped bring every partner even closer. TMI…let’s move on!

When dancingwe consider the millions of potential users of Sugar – and the fact that these users will span the world and every conceivable industry – SugarCRM’s global partner network is an integral link in the success chain. Our partners are local experts with the CRM knowledge needed to help companies maximize their ROI and drive transformative change across their organizations. Our partners ensure that every deployment is a winner.

A huge thank you to every partner in attendance, as so much of our continued success is due to their efforts. And for those who missed what partners called SugarCRM’s “best Partner Summit ever” –we’ll save you a spot next year! We look forward bringing the entire partner ecosystem back together again for SugarCon 2015 next April in San Francisco, and are excited to build on the success for next year’s Global Partner Summit!

We have just published the agenda and speakers list for SugarCon ’13 - and it is literally PACKED with sessions and keynotes from CRM thought leaders, awesome customer stories, and lots of Sugar tips and tricks.

With seven tracks covering everything from sales, marketing and support excellence – to the tech trends affecting CRM and your business in general – SugarCon 13 offers something for everyone.

Highlights of the agenda include:

  • More than six hours of keynote presentations from leaders in CRM, including Larry Augustin, CEO of SugarCRM, Terry Jones, founder and former CEO of Travelocity.com, author of CRM at the Speed of Light Paul Greenberg of The 56 Group, LLC, and partners IBM, Pardot, and VMware.
  • Top research findings and best practices in CRM from industry analysts representing leading research firms. Subject matter experts include Gartner Research Director Patrick Stakenas; Forrester Research Vice President Bill Band; Esteban Kolsky, principal and founder of ThinkJar; Brent Leary, partner, CRM Essentials; Jesus Hoyos of Solvis Consulting and JesusHoyos.com, LLC; and Jim Dickie, managing partner, CSO Insights.
  • More than 70 customer and solution innovation breakout sessions highlighting CRM implementation best practices and detailed case studies. Key customers from the United States, Europe, and Latin America include EMIS, uShip, Harper, Inc., Cogburn Law, Bray International, Hillel, the Lindner Group, Tollpost Globe AS, Mitsubishi Brazil, Despegar.com, MacAllister (CAT) Rentals, the Irish Local Gov’t Management Agency, and USAFact.
  • Live solution demonstrations of Sugar Mobile and Sugar 7 – SugarCRM’s next generation CRM platform.
  • Expert-led best practices discussions, innovative platform case studies, and hands-on workshops on the latest SugarCRM platform.
  • App Throwdown, which is an event on April 10th to showcase the most innovative solutions across the Sugar ecosystem live on stage, where the audience can choose their favorite. This year’s contestants include: Nepo Systems, W-Systems Corp., Epicom, Colosa, and Altertus Technologies.
  • Hands-on customer training at a discounted price.
  • More than 30 leading companies will be exhibiting in the SugarCon 2013 Expo Hall. Major sponsors include IBM, Pardot, VMware, Riva, NextPrinciples and DocuSign.
  • Nightly networking events across New York, including the Tuesday, April 9 Evening Gala to be held at the 230 Fifth Ave Rooftop Garden and Penthouse Lounge.
SugarCon’s theme this year is “CRM for Everyone.” Join us to see and hear first-hand how to leverage the latest cloud, social, and mobile technologies so they can make individual users enterprise-wide more effective at engaging 1:1 with customers or prospects.
Register for SugarCon 13 HERE.