28 March2008 – CAMEC consolidates its reporting with Softline Sage ERP Accpac

Issued by: Watt Communications & G Watt Design

[Johannesburg, 28 March 2008] – Creating a uniform accounting platform to make consolidated reporting more accurate, and time and cost-efficient is a challenge for any mining company.

The Central African Mining and Exploration Company (CAMEC) decided to proactively address this at the start of November 2006 and have recently concluded a very successful implementation – thanks to Softline Sage ERP Accpac and AccTech Systems.

John Raath, financial director: CAMEC, explains that beyond the need for consolidated reporting CAMEC wanted to exert better control over its spending and ensure its reporting figures were trustworthy.

“To make the implementation even more interesting, we also required the system be accessible over the Internet, enabling our people to be able to work anywhere at anytime. This would also make the company’s information available to the rest of the group 24/7 without their having to wait for reports from the various regions.”

With CAMEC and Softline Sage ERP Accpac already having an established relationship (the mining company implemented its “Accpac for Mining” solution earlier in 2006), the solution provider was an obvious choice for a project of this size.

Keith Fenner, sales director: Softline Sage ERP Accpac, was confident the Accpac solutions would exceed the expectations of CAMEC – something they have gone on to do.

“It was decided to implement all the core Sage ERP Accpac modules, both financial and those involved in distribution, with the GL consolidations module sitting on top of these. The powerful Sage ERP Accpac Insight module was also installed to allow users to drill through information quickly and easily.”

He adds that to meet CAMEC’s Internet requirements, all applications were hosted on an Internet-based platform by Exordia: “This provides fast secure access to applications deployed through the company’s Citrix application server. This was critical in terms of maximising flexibility for users running offline in rural locations who then need to consolidate back to the headquarters set up at the data centre.”

When it came to selecting the right implementation partner, CAMEC didn’t hesitate in following Softline Sage ERP Accpac’s recommendation of AccTech Systems. Tertius Zitzke, MD of AccTech Systems, says AccTech’s experience in the mining and service industry was invaluable in this implementation. “We drew on both this and our proven project methodology throughout to eliminate risk and maximise effectiveness.”

Zitzke adds that the implementation was a challenging one – with the scope of the project very hard to determine initially. “CAMEC was making a number of acquisitions at the time and a variety of entities were involved. This caused the goal posts to change as time progressed.”

AccTech Systems’ approach was thus to decide on three basic phases of implementation, dividing the relevant entities into these three groups. “Because the offices involved were so diverse, the project required some innovative thinking on the part of the engineers involved. We ensured though that each and every company on the list was put onto the Accpac applications which, in some cases, involved redesigning certain aspects of the systems,” says Zitzke.

CAMEC’s official implementation started in November 2006, with phase one being completed in February this year. Phase two and three followed suit. While change management and training staff to use the new systems proved challenges, Zitzke says his team’s commitment to making the implementation work resulted in extending user training to build confidence.

“In any implementation like this, it is the users who ultimately determine the success of the project. By taking that extra time to ensure they are happy using the new applications – and want to use them – we were able to create the ideal environment for the consolidation and more accurate reporting.”

The result of all the hard work? CAMEC is already enjoying the benefits. “We had a clean audit report and were able to report in record time for this financial year. On top of this, the consolidation module together with Insight reporting has made the consolidation process much simpler with fewer queries and mistakes being made when reporting to London – an incredible 23 companies were consolidated in six weeks,” says Raath.

The combination of CAMEC, Softline Sage ERP Accpac and AccTech systems has thus proven a winning one yet again. And, with the best possible solutions in place and new company acquisitions continuing at the mining company, the sky would seem to be the limit for CAMEC.

Softline Sage ERP Accpac

Softline Sage ERP Accpac is a global provider of business management solutions including financial, distribution, service management, retail, warehouse management, manufacturing and CRM to the mid-range market. Its solutions are delivered to 130 countries exclusively through its global network of solution providers including over 150 throughout Africa. Softline Sage ERP Accpac’s product line includes: Sage ERP Accpac, Sage CRM, Accpac RMS, Accpac Warehouse Management System and Accpac Insight.

Softline

Softline is a leading provider of accounting, payroll and CRM software solutions to small, medium and large companies. Founded in 1988 by Ivan Epstein, Alan Osrin and Steven Cohen, Softline was established during the formative years of the software industry and listed on the JSE Securities Exchange South Africa in February 1997. Softline expanded to establish a strong position within its area of focus in South Africa and Australia.

Focused on the development of accounting, payroll and CRM software solutions, Softline has a 16-year track record as a market leader. The group has a broad range of products offering users a variety of software solutions to run their businesses efficiently. Softline’s leading brands include Softline Accpac, Softline Enterprise, Softline Pastel (Accounting and Payroll) and Softline VIP. The combination of the group’s product offerings, provide Softline customers with comprehensive, well-branded accounting, payroll and CRM software solutions.

In November 2003, Softline was acquired by Sage Group plc, an established FTSE 100 company. The group includes market-leading businesses throughout the United Kingdom, Europe, North America, South Africa and Australia, supplying business software to the small, medium and large business community.

Softline has a solid track record of profitability and cash generation. The group delivers quality accounting, payroll and CRM software solutions that improve the efficiencies of businesses around the world.

Sage

The Sage Group plc, an established FTSE 100 company, is a leading supplier of accounting and business management software solutions and services to 5.2 million small and medium clients worldwide. With over 13 000 employees, the Sage Group comprises market-leading businesses throughout Europe, United Kingdom, North America, South Africa and Australia. Its products and services are sold through a global network of 23 000 reseller partners, 40 000 accountants as well as directly to clients from Sage companies throughout the world. For the financial year ending 30 September 2006, the group’s revenue grew by 22% to £935.6 million and the operating profit rose by 18% to £235.8 million.

AccTech Systems

AccTech Systems is a technology independent IT solution and services provider. Certified as a Microsoft Gold Partner with competencies in ISV Software Solutions, Data Management Solutions, Information Worker Solutions and Business Process and Integration, AccTech has representation in 5 South African provinces as well as 11 other African Countries. AccTech is also certified as a Premier Accpac Solution provider by Sage International and is currently ranked as the No.1 Accpac Solution provider in the world.

Editorial contacts

AccTech Systems
Nick Botha
(012) 640 2600
nb@acctech.biz