SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Esmeralda Swartz, Kevin Jackson

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Xero, H&R Block Form Strategic Alliance to Bring Next-Generation, Online Financial Accounting Platform to Small Businesses Across the U.S.

H&R Block to Exclusively Promote Xero as Preferred Small Business Online Accounting Solution

SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- (Marketwired) -- 04/29/14 -- Xero the global leader in online accounting software, and H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB), the world's largest consumer tax services provider, formed a strategic alliance to offer Xero as the core small business online accounting platform in H&R Block's Small Business Program suite of services.

H&R Block selected Xero as its preferred online small business accounting partner after an intensive vetting process. H&R Block has 11,000 branded locations nationwide, and will solely promote Xero as the recommended small business online accounting solution in the locations that sell H&R Block's Small Business Program suite of services.

This partnership is part of H&R Block's services to small businesses to give them a technological edge with the most modern, cloud-based financial management tools. For Xero, partnering with the well-known tax company gives it the opportunity to increase its brand awareness in the U.S. and expand its marketing and sales channel to more small businesses throughout the country.

Xero leads the way in the new wave of cloud-born technology innovators that are re-inventing how small businesses manage their everyday business tasks. Xero offers a modern, design-led customer experience that makes accounting intuitive and even fun for business owners who don't have an accounting background. Ultimately, it gives small businesses a technological edge so they can more effectively compete and grow their businesses.

"Together with H&R Block's well-known brand and established channel, we're able to help improve the financial lives of more small businesses by bringing them the latest cutting-edge financial tools," said Peter Karpas, CEO, Xero North America. "At the same time, we're joining forces to free business owners from the limitations of 1990s-era accounting software that no longer works the way businesses work today in a 24/7, online and mobile world."

Xero Small Business Accounting Platform
Xero's small business online accounting platform is easy to use and greatly simplifies once tedious and complicated accounting tasks such as bank reconciliation and invoicing. It gives business owners a real-time, up-to-date view of their cash flow and bank balances so they can make smart business decisions on the spot. Xero is an online platform so users are not chained to their desks or computers as with desktop accounting software. They simply use whichever device they prefer -- their laptop, tablet or smartphone -- to see their real-time cash flow, create and send invoices, as well as share and collaborate on financial reports. To meet the specific needs of different businesses and industries, Xero seamlessly integrates with 300 best-in-class business tools such as Square for taking mobile payments, Harvest for time tracking and Bill.com for streamlining payables, billing and cashflow.

About H&R Block
H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB) is the world's largest consumer tax services provider. More than 625 million tax returns have been prepared worldwide by and through H&R Block since 1955. In fiscal 2013, H&R Block had annual revenues of $2.9 billion with 24.8 million tax returns prepared worldwide. Tax return preparation services are provided in over 11,000 company-owned and franchise retail tax offices worldwide by professional tax preparers, and through H&R Block digital products. H&R Block Bank provides affordable banking products and services. For more information, visit the H&R Block Newsroom.

About Xero
Xero is beautiful, easy to use online accounting software for small businesses and their advisors. The company has more than 280,000 paying customers in more than 100 countries around the world. Recently, Xero garnered a "Top Choice" review for Online-Based Business Accounting Apps from PC World. The Xero US team is headquartered in San Francisco. Xero is hosted with Rackspace in Chicago.

Xero Contact:
Sharna Brockett
Director of PR
(415) 837-3291
Email Contact

H&R Block Contact:
Gene King
Director of Media Relations
(816) 854-4672
Email Contact

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