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Epicor brings ERP solutions to Egyptian businesses
Published in Daily News Egypt on 05 - 08 - 2010

CAIRO: In the past 20 months, business software solutions provider Epicor has more than doubled the number of countries in which its products are sold.
Offering single software enterprise solutions, Epicor says its products enable companies to conduct business “without barriers.”
And today, these products are available in 50 countries — up from 20 before — said Rishikesh Trivedi, head of marketing and channel development at Epicor for the Middle East, Africa and India.
Speaking to Daily News Egypt on the sidelines of the IDC IT Managers' Forum in Cairo earlier this week, Trivedi said the conference has been successful in attracting large numbers of IT managers over the years who are interested in new technologies in the market.
His company wanted to take the opportunity to showcase their latest enterprise resource product (ERP), which is an integrated system used to manage internal and external resources in order to facilitate the flow of information between different business functions.
Their latest offering, Epicor 9, incorporates nine different ERP programs, “allowing businesses to integrate and synchronize all departments within a business.”
Employing service-oriented architecture (SOA) and web services technology, Epicor delivers end-to-end, industry-specific enterprise software solutions for manufacturing, distribution, services, retail and hospitality, which, according to Trivedi, enable companies to increase efficiencies, improve performance and build competitive advantage.
“In 2008, globally, Epicor had total revenues of $495 million and went down to $410 million in 2009. Although in 2009, it was the first year we passed $100 million of cash generated and our stock prices grew by 250 percent,” said Trivedi — one of the highest percentage rises by any IT company listed on NASDAQ.
Amr El-Azzouny, general manager of Global Business Solutions, Epicor's partner in Egypt, explained how the product can be used in the local market.
El-Azzouny said that Egyptian companies started using ERPs by utilizing accounting applications, followed by manufacturing management packages, customer relations management applications (CRM) and finally, business intelligence applications to provide reports and feedback on what is in happening in different departments and how to take timely preventative and corrective actions.
These applications were separate islands of data and information, requiring more time and money to upgrade and synchronize to provide relevant analysis, putting a heavy burden on businesses and managers, El-Azzouny said.
Their new consolidated product targets the increasing number of Egyptian businesses over the last few years that have been growing to proportions requiring efficient and comprehensive management solutions.
Trivedi explained that Epicor 9 solves the problem of synchronization, imbedding the different functionalities in one place so users can access manufacturing, HR, accounting, customer management, supplier management and business intelligence through one application.
“Epicor's end-to-end ERP software requires less implementation time, to integrate all departments into the system because it is easily flexible and can be engineered and designed to match business needs,” said El-Azzouny.
A prevalent worry when it comes to ERPs in Egypt is the time it would take developers to train businesses on using the software proficiently. However, Trivedi says, the software is simple and compatible with familiar applications.
“We have very strong interaction and compatibility with the Microsoft office application, a finance department using Excel sheets and a sales department using Outlook never have to do duplicate data entry as the system would recognize the Excel document as finance related and an email with a customer for example, as sales related and store them in the ERP in the appropriate manner.”
This also gives managers ease of access when searching, he said, as the data is stored and reports formulated automatically by the software.

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