Open source consultancy has brought open source vTiger to the UK market and is offering an on-demand version.

Companies looking for a cost-effective CRM product are being urged to adopt an open source approach according to The Open Learning Centre (OLC). The Farnham-based consultancy has teamed up with vTiger to offer vtiger CRM On Demand (SaaS) to UK organisations.

According to OLC's joint owner, Alan Lord, vTiger offers cost benefits over other software. "It costs just £10 per user per month and importantly, there is only one version of vtiger - the full version." Lord said that OLC had been working with vTiger for some time and was now introducing the on-demand version of the software.

He said that vTiger differed considerably from the best-known open source CRM software, SugarCRM, even though they came from the same roots. "vTiger was forked from Sugar five or six years ago and when Sugar changed licensing," he said. "Sugar is not fully open source now while vTiger has a much more liberal licence." He pointed out that Sugar's community edition was not as fully-featured as vTiger's "For example, the community edition doesn't offer features such as plug-ins to Microsoft Office, mobile functionality and workflow, all of which are included in vTiger."

The vTiger software also offered cost advantages compared to proprietary SaaS offerings such as Salesforce said Lord. "We offer nearly all the functionality as proprietary solution but a lot cheaper," he said. "Look at Salesforce: its headline rate is $50 per person, which sounds reasonable, but as soon as you want to do anything interesting, it gets expensive quite quickly."

Lord said that the company was looking to sell the software to small and mid-sized companies but there was no upper limit. "We haven't sold it to major enterprises but there's no reason why it couldn't scale," he said.