Gauteng Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  19 Oct 2010

ERP: Afresh Expands on Innovative Business Model


Recent Gauteng Business News

On the back of an innovative business model and a commitment to creating true customer value from ERP implementations, Namibia’s Afresh Consult is expanding its presence in South Africa. It has opened a new office in Middleburg and another in Lenasia in Gauteng, while it has a presence in the Western Cape through its Somerset West office. In addition to its Pretoria head office, Afresh Consult also has a Namibian office in Windhoek, and Zimbabwean offices in Harare and Bulawayo.

Managing director Immo Böhm explains the business model: “In effect, we offer a franchise structure, but the product isn’t fast food or video rentals. It’s business software.”

While that may seem an unusual approach, it is one in which Böhm has complete confidence. “The model works because the franchise owner has a vested interest in developing the market, finding new clients and applying business software to the advantage of clients. Meanwhile, since achieving client value wherever the Afresh Consult name is used is an imperative to grow our business, complete support is provided from head office. That includes training, access to technical resources, and structured support which ensures that service level agreements can be honoured.”

A regional presence is essential, Böhm continues, to extend sales reach and to provide the appropriate level of support which clients expect from their business software systems.

Providing ERP solutions from vendor HansaWorld, Böhm says Afresh is rapidly carving a niche for itself, particularly in the manufacturing, retail and distribution industries. Particular interest is also coming from hospitality and transport and logistics verticals. “The flexibility, short time to implement and predictable cost basis associated with the HansaWorld Enterprise solution is finding favour, especially in the mid-market,” he notes. “This is an ERP system which provides a complete and fully-integrated set of modules to meet the needs of almost any company.”

The strategy which Afresh will follow as it seeks to establish a pan-African business is a simple one. “We would like every customer to become a reference-able site. Doing that is more difficult than it sounds: we must not only deliver on the promises we make, but also actively involve the customer in building his system. With a skilled team and a globally proven ERP solution [HansaWorld has over 70 000 customers in 110 countries], that is quite possible. On the back of that, we will also seek to extend our presence with the franchise model, with a new office planned for Kenya in the near future, as well as further offices expected in South Africa.”

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