Microsoft has acquired the software IP of North American manufacturing software specialist Fullscope and professional services ISV Computer Generated Solutions, as well as retail ISV partners LS Retail from Iceland and Columbus IT Partner from Denmark.
The IP from all four of the acquisitions will be baked into one of Microsoft's ERP (enterprise resource planning) suites, Dynamics AX.
Dynamics AX is essentially the Axapta product, which Microsoft acquired from Danish vendor Damgaard in 2002.
Brian Holder, sales director of Microsoft Dynamics in Australia, said the acquisitions have been in the planning for some months, but were announced together to paint a clear picture of Microsoft's ERP strategy.
Software products from the four ISV partners were already on the Microsoft price list, he said, and will remain so.
The difference is that now Microsoft "takes ownership of the IP as it stands and we create a roadmap to develop incremental functionality over time."
The major advantage for customers, he said, is a "heightened degree of certainty over future development of these products."
Holder said the Dynamics AX suite - and indeed some of the acquired technologies - are commonly used in Australia.
Devendra Ladva, national accounting manager at P&N Beverages Australia said the company uses Dynamics AX and the Fullscope process manufacturing solution in its business today.
"We've found running the system is easy and users like the familiar Microsoft interface which means they can be up-and-running quickly, while minimising our training costs," Ladva said.