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Software firm looks to Nairobi campus

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September 20, 2010 – Accfin East Africa, the local partners of Sage ACCPAC, who are creators of accounting and management software, say they are all set to build a software campus in Nairobi.

The Sh120 million project, they say, will see ACCFIN (E.A) LIMITED put up a dedicated Sage ACCPAC development and support centre in the city to serve the East African market.

The campus replicates strategies adopted by Google and Microsoft, but ACCFIN says the centre will serve an additional purpose of researching to develop new software products for the region.

Chief executive officer Raymond Cheruiyot had this to say: “Any technology vendor serious about a partnership with its clients in the region needs to study the trends of payment models. Unlike in other markets where card and bank payment systems are common, in Africa the remarkable growth of mobile transactions has presented a unique customisation need. We need to continue influencing business dynamics in the region through active support.”
 
Sage ACCPAC’s software is particularly popular with the manufacturing, mining, education and service sectors, with institutions such as the Catholic University, Kenya Flourspar mining corporation and AAR services counted among pioneer users in the region.

Sage ACCPAC meanwhile says it has a unique purchasing model that has made its software affordable to SMEs. Under the model, the deployment of business software like the ERPs that help improve a company’s efficiency is done one module at a time. 

“We are already implementing this flexible model.  A company that opts for this gets specific suites like the accounting or customer relations management module and only pays for that specific module. When the company is ready to get another module, we easily integrate them so they can work as a unit,” Cheruiyot explains.

Other international players in the business software space already represented in the region include SAP and Microsoft, which supplies the Microsoft Dynamics ERP.

Vendors expects the use of business software in the region to grow in leaps and bounds in the next five years, following increased government support of the SME segment, improved internet connectivity and better computer literacy. 

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