Google has announced a program that will see technology solution providers selling its cloud-based Google Apps to businesses around the world.

In direct competition to Microsoft's Office, authorised resellers will be able to sell, customise and support Google Apps Premier Edition a scheme that has already been rolled out to around 50 pilot partners worldwide.

"Google Apps has reached a level of maturity where it is useful and valuable for almost any business" said Dave Girouard, president of enterprise, Google.

"This program gives IT solution providers an easy way to introduce cloud computing to their service offerings, while helping more businesses make the transition to this new era of technology".

The Google Apps reseller program is now open for applications from interested firms around the world with authorised resellers due to begin selling Apps by the end of March.