As first reported Monday in a PPB Newslink Breaking News alert, PPAI, SAGE and Promotional Products Professionals of Canada (PPPC), the association serving the Canadian promotional products industry, have announced a strategic relationship to deliver a comprehensive membership solution to promotional products distributors and suppliers in the Canadian marketplace.

“We’ve spent the last number of months listening to our members and hearing exactly what they were asking for,” says Heidi Reimer-Epp, chair of the PPPC board of directors. “From there, we formulated our three goals for this year: providing our members with proven technology solutions, enhancing the value of our membership, and hosting trade shows that are worth attending.”

In this strategic relationship with PPAI and SAGE, PPPC’s members receive access to industry-leading technology solutions and trade show opportunities, as well as education, networking, business savings benefits and legislative initiatives. Distributors will now receive membership support and product research capabilities through their PPPC membership, while suppliers will receive the full benefits of a SAGE Advantage Membership, which allows them to verify their products, update their product and business information, and advertise across all SAGE platforms and on distributors’ websites.

“This is the future of how you’re seeing not-for-profit organizations collaborating together and working with for-profit companies that bring best of breed products and services to the industry,” says Paul Bellantone, CAE, president and CEO of PPAI. “I think this is really representative of how organizations are not only looking forward to what their members need today, but what they need going forward. We think that this is an opportunity for us to marshal our resources together, to grow, and protect the industry in ways we haven’t been able to do before.”

All new and renewing PPPC distributor members will receive a two-user subscription to SAGE Total Access, which includes SAGE Online, SAGE Web and SAGE Mobile, and provides them with a suite of product research, presentations, CRM, order management and virtual sampling solutions. In addition, distributor members will receive a PPAI membership that provides access to educational resources, networking opportunities, legislative initiatives, and various business saving benefits. Also, as part of this relationship, all new and renewing PPPC supplier members will receive a SAGE Advantage Membership as part of their PPPC membership. These new PPPC member benefits will be issued each year upon payment of PPPC membership dues.

“This is exactly the partnership we’ve been looking for to help our members grow their businesses and strengthen the promotional products industry in Canada,” says Jonathan Strauss, president and CEO of PPPC. “Our members are telling us they need a technology solution that works, and we’re excited to have a proven partner with SAGE. We’re also looking forward to continuing to learn from all the success of PPAI and working together to grow our programs and services.”

PPPC is offering all current PPPC distributor members who are not already SAGE Total Access subscribers access to the program, plus PPAI membership, until their next PPPC renewal date. PPPC supplier members who are not already SAGE Advantage Members will have access to SAGE member benefits until their next PPPC renewal date as well. These complimentary subscriptions and memberships will be automatically activated by July 1. Each member will receive login instructions from SAGE via email when the member’s service becomes active.

PPPC has also produced a video on the strategic partnership featuring Reimer-Epp, Bellantone, Strauss, PPAI Board Chair Dale Denham, MAS+, and SAGE President David Natinsky, MAS. The video highlights details of the relationship and what it brings to PPPC members.

“SAGE has been the leader in bringing business management tools to the industry for over 26 years. PPPC members have been longing for a technology solution that will work for them in Canada,” says Natinsky. “Given our experience in the industry as well as our specific experience in the Canadian market, we’re confident that we can provide the tools and services that PPPC’s members have been craving to help them succeed in the Canadian promotional products market.”

SAGE has implemented French-language web and PDF quotes/presentations in the recently released SAGE Online 14. A comprehensive development roadmap and implementation schedule that adds French-language support to many of its services and client-facing materials is in progress, with new features being added as soon as July 1 and continuing through early 2019. These features will include a browser-based client for distributor research and business management as part of Total Access, client-facing email campaigns and distributor and company store websites, to name a few.

Hosting the industry’s largest database of over one million promotional products and over 4,300 suppliers, SAGE will launch an effort to integrate all PPPC supplier members’ data not already part of the SAGE database. With the support of a SAGE Advantage Membership, supplier members will have multiple options to upload their data and make the SAGE database an even more comprehensive solution for all its users.