REDMOND, Wash. (AP) _ Microsoft Corp. says it has reached an agreement to acquire Consumers Software Inc. of Vancouver, British Columbia.

The move will expand Microsoft's presence in the personal computer electronic mail market.

Terms of the agreement, announced Thursday, were not disclosed. The acquisition is expected to be completed by month's end.

Consumers Software makes The Network Courier, which provides electronic mail over networks linking IBM-compatible personal computers.

Microsoft offers Microsoft Mail for Appletalk, which is the networking product offered by Apple Computer Inc. for its Macintosh machines.

Redmond-based Microsoft has offered Consumers Software's 70 employees permanent positions at a new product center planned for Vancouver, British Columbia.

Microsoft and Consumers Software have been working together for more than a year to develop future versions of electronic mail products. Microsoft will soon release Microsoft Mail for PC Networks, which is based on The Network Courier.