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SQL Server 2008 R2 PowerPivot for Excel and SharePoint is here; volume licensing downloads available today

We’re happy to announce volume licensing downloads for SQL Server 2008 R2 are available today in all languages, including the public availability of the much anticipated PowerPivot functionality, delivering on the promise of managed self-service BI. Starting today customers can download the trial version of Office 2010 and SharePoint 2010 and the web downloads of PowerPivot for Excel and SharePoint. To get started please visit www.powerpivot.com.

“Until now, if business users wanted to take advantage of the large volumes of data their company collected, they had to ask their IT department to generate a report but with the managed self-service BI capabilities in SQL Server 2008 R2, they’ll be able to do such analyses themselves,” said Donald Farmer, principal program manager for SQL Server and one of the master minds behind PowerPivot. “That means they’ll be able to answer questions more quickly, experiment more, and test ‘what if’ scenarios. Organizations can become more agile. That’s exciting.”

The SQL Server team is excited to be participating in today’s Microsoft Office 2010 and SharePoint 2010 global launch event. You can hear more about Office, SharePoint and Microsoft’s BI solutions by attending the keynote by Steven Elop, president of the Microsoft Business Division today at 8 a.m. PDT, Webcast live at www.the2010event.com. Additional upcoming virtual sessions include:

· BI PowerPivot Session – May 13th, 9 am-10 a.m. PDT

· SharePoint BI Session – May 14, 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. PDT

· Microsoft BI Session – May 19, 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. PDT

· TechTarget Live Chat on BI – May 20, 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. PDT

In addition to participation in today’s Office launch, the SQL Server 2008 R2 worldwide launch tour is well underway and boasts approximately 100 cities from Johannesburg, South Africa to Seoul, Korea, with more than 20,000 customers expected to attend one of the worldwide events. Events that have already taken place have been received with great enthusiasm including PASS Asia 2010, European PASS 2010, Portugal TechDays and UK TechDays. In Columbia, more than 800 developers and IT professionals gathered to hear Steve Ballmer give the closing address.

To find an upcoming event or to explore what’s new in SQL Server 2008 R2 please visit the SQL Server 2008 R2 Virtual Guided Tour at www.sqlserverlaunch.com. The Tour is now available in 11 different languages including French, German, Russian, LATAM Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Italian, Japanese, and Korean. For more information please visit the SQL Server 2008 R2 Virtual Press Room here.