7 Dec 2023



Microsoft Licencing

Successful licence optimisation with used software

Applications, operating systems, servers, communication - Microsoft dominates the market for standard software. The larger the company, the more extensive the range of licensed software products. Licence management for IT managers or software asset managers is correspondingly complex. It makes sense to regularly review the current inventory of Microsoft licences, both on a regular basis and as required, in order to keep a constant eye on licence costs and optimise them consistently. This is because the large number of Microsoft licences usually ties up a large part of the IT budget. Short development cycles for new software products and current price increases, such as the average of eleven per cent across Europe this spring, increased the pressure to act. Added to this are the challenges of digital transformation with numerous new technologies and applications in cloud computing.

However above all, successful and efficient licence management that focuses on business needs requires a well-planned and long-term licensing strategy. In this blog post, we use four case studies to show how SMEs and corporations can use PREO to benefit from used Microsoft licences in an audit-proof and compliant manner and integrate them into their software architecture in different ways.

Check and optimise Microsoft licences - four different scenarios

It is not only the dynamic cost development of Microsoft cloud products that is causing more and more IT managers to rethink their cloud strategy and focus more strongly on on-premise solutions. The opportunity to utilise the advantages of used licences, at least in some areas, to relieve the IT budget and gain new financial leeway plays a central role in this.

The right strategy will always be based on current business needs and the medium and long-term development of the company. Even though every company is different, our experience shows how the use of used software licences pays off in different ways based on the following four scenarios:

1. Full on-premise operation 

These companies do not want to take any cloud risks, data security and sovereignty as well as high compliance standards have priority.

2. Combination of on-prem and cloud in a hybrid model

These companies rely on a flexible software architecture, already use cloud services for individual areas, but do not want to forego the advantages of on-prem software.

3. Total cloud solution

A cloud strategy has already been implemented and the unused on-premise licences can be sold to generate financial leeway for new projects.      

4. Return from the cloud and at least partial integration of on-prem software

Quite a few companies are suffering from the dynamic development of licence costs for cloud products and are planning at least a partial return to on-prem operation as part of an exit strategy.

Companies that want to review the structure of their Microsoft licences and clarify the extent to which they still fit their current licensing strategy are cordially invited to an analysis meeting. PREO's licensing experts will be happy to advise you personally and prepare a non-binding offer including a calculation of the potential savings.

Example of Asklepios clinics: on-prem solution reduces licence costs by 50 percent

Both compliance requirements and cost pressure in the hospital sector are high. The Asklepios healthcare group, one of the leading private hospital operators in Germany, has been facing these challenges for many years. 

employs more than 47,000 people in around 160 healthcare facilities nationwide.

In this customer case, the Managing Director of Asklepios IT Services explains how, following the end of support for various operating systems and applications, he found a legally compliant and scalable solution with used Microsoft licences from PREO, which resulted in a 50 percent saving on licence costs.

Example LMT Group - hybrid cloud solution saves a high six-figure sum

The use of used software at the LMT Group, an internationally active group of companies in the field of special machine construction and precision tools with over 2,300 employees at more than 20 locations worldwide, was initially difficult to imagine for IT manager Tim Fäsecke.

In this customer case, you will learn how he changed his mind in the course of a SAM project across 10 IT locations and why he now sees used software as a valid model for licence procurement. The hybrid solution combined, among other things, an Office 365 E1 plan with used licences for Office 2016 and Windows 2016 Server CAL. The result was the functionality of an E3 plan, but without Office ProPlus. The bottom line was that PREO helped his company save a high six-figure sum in the future-oriented reorganisation of its business software.

Example of Atruvia - sale of used licences generates millions

With the Atruvia merger in 2015, two large and partly different contract volumes of Microsoft licences in the cooperative financial network of the Volksbanken and Raiffeisenbanken had to be successively merged into one joint contract. The decisive merger and thus standardisation of the software assets took place with the switch from purchase to rental licences as part of the introduction of the Microsoft online service M365. The software licences that were no longer required as a result represented considerable sales potential. After months of research and the creation of extensive contract and usage histories with intensive licence consulting and project support, Atruvia was finally able to securely transfer over 150,000 Microsoft licences to PREO for a seven-figure sum at the beginning of 2020.

As the digitalisation partner of the Genossenschaftliche Finanzgruppe, Atruvia is responsible for the IT of almost 900 Volksbanken and Raiffeisenbanken, including 86 million customer accounts and IT services for private banks and companies such as ADAC, with around 8,400 employees across the Group.

Swedex example - cloud exit reduces licence costs by six figures

Cloud solutions such as Office 365 from Microsoft offer a range of conveniences, but often entail a constant spiral of costs. Swedex also experienced this and left the Microsoft cloud model after three years. In this customer case, you can find out why the medium-sized company opted instead for used on-premises software from PREO and was thus able to save licence costs of around 100,000 euros over a period of three years. However, it was not only the immense cost benefits that were convincing, but also the verified and audit-proof transfer of the licences as well as the quick and uncomplicated installation of the used MS Office licences and Microsoft server licences.

Swedex is a manufacturer and direct marketer of customised, high-quality presentation and promotional items for business customers in Germany, the Netherlands, Austria and Switzerland. With more than 35 years of experience, Swedex is the recognised market leader in the field of document presentation.

PREO tip: These and other customer cases, white papers and further information on the successful use of used software licences can be found at any time in the download area of our website.

Check and optimise licences - PREO advises and offers an extensive range of used software

PREO offers companies, organisations and public administrations a large selection of used volume licences for current and older versions of standard software from market-leading manufacturers, especially Microsoft. Whatever the need for used software, with PREO small and medium-sized companies as well as large organisations have all the advantages on their side:   

  • High savings on ongoing licence costs of up to 70 percent compared to the respective new version. 
  • 100 percent legally compliant and audit-proof licence acquisition with maximum transparency in all processing steps, including complete documentation in the PREO "Easy Compliance" licence portal.
  • Many years of expertise in the integration of used software licences into classic network structures or hybrid licence models.
  • Detailed market knowledge and extensive experience through the audit-proof transfer of over one million used software licences.
  • Existing software licence management capacities for large IT infrastructure projects with thousands of workstations and cross-border locations.
  • Active contribution to reducing the CO2 footprint in the IT sector by entering into a resource-conserving circular economy, including the extension of software and hardware cycles.
  • Convincing reference projects for numerous well-known companies from a wide range of industries.