Licensing Model Changes for Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013, Part 2: Charting Microsoft's ERP Goals

October 3 2012

In part one of this article we looked at some of the key details and differences between the new Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2013 licensing model and the previous one.  Given Microsoft's stated goal of simplicity and an attempt to be more competitive in the SME arena of ERP, some of the details may leave partners and customers with more questions than before.  Let's dive in a little deeper to see where we might find the real winners and losers in

About Vjekoslav Babic

Vjekoslav Babić is an independent Microsoft Dynamics NAV consultant, trainer, author and blogger, with 10 years of experience in NAV and 16 years of experience in IT.

As a solutions architect and a project manager with a leading Microsoft Dynamics President's Club service provider company, as a Microsoft Dynamics NAV consultant with Microsoft Services, and as an independent consultant, he has been working on Microsoft Dynamics NAV implementations ranging from tiny one-man-bands to international mega-corporations, delivering services and trainings all over the world.

In 2008, Vjekoslav co-authored the acclaimed book "Implementing Microsoft Dynamics NAV 2009". Vjekoslav runs an active blog about NAV implementation, project management and development best practices, acts as a columnist and editorial advisory board member at, and as a columnist in a number of other web or printed periodicals in Croatia and worldwide. Vjekoslav is also a frequent speaker at Microsoft or Microsoft Dynamics conferences.

Since spring 2010, Vjekoslav has been awarded the prestigious Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award for Microsoft Dynamics NAV.

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ajkauffmann's picture

Don't forget the role that the limited user can play in the price game. How many companies are there that need >150 full NAV users? Maybe Microsoft is thinking that the limited user is sufficient for a significant number of users. That makes a huge difference in price! And, at the other hand, companies with 1 - 3 users are probably target for selling a cloud based solution. Kind regars, Arend-Jan Kauffmann

vbabic's picture

Thanks, Arend-Jan! My next article is actually about the Limited User license and the role it plays. It's truly unlikely that you'd need more than 150 full users, but limited is very limited, and much more limited than it lets you believe initially. Regarding the cloud-based solutions, well.. with Azure not being a part of RTM, those 1-3 user companies are going to go for other solutions instead. Why couldn't they have came up with an attractive perpetual scenario there? For example, the starter pack of 3 users at the price of 1 od BE user would have been a monster! It's funny: for those for whom NAV was expensive, they've made it even more expensive. For those for whom it was affordable, they've made it more affordable.'s picture

Then I look forward to your article on the Limited User! At the moment, we're positioning the Ltd User as the employee you wouldn't have bothered giving access to previously as it wouldn't have been cost effective. I completely understand what Microsoft are trying to achieve with the Ltd User, suspect it needs some tweaking to make it fulfil a useful role for anyone entering more than a timesheet. NAV positioning-wise, probably need to consider this in the wider context of how NAV sits alongside AX. Is Microsoft gambling NAV revenue in the hope of gaining greater share for AX? Ultimately, I think more than ever, the market will make its own mind up and not buy in the way Microsoft would ideally like. (i.e. we will continue to see corporate level companies invest in NAV) For partners the cost-effective starter pack raises challenges in how to implement and how to make their support desks profitable. The old model of support calculated on licence value may not cover the demand on support a smaller customer is likely to place. Microsoft tell me lots of partners are implementing NAV in 5 days, I would be very interested in partners' view on this.

Nick Prevett's picture

It is clear that MS wants to have more space for AX so they are making NAV more expensive above about 60 users, have they taken the services into consideration that are required to get the system implemented? you are looking at considerably more services for AX compared to NAV when you have less than 150 users so the ROI is still tilted towards NAV for those deals.