ADHC moves to MS from Oracle

Manufacturing firm Abu Dhabi Holding Corporation (ADHC) is slashing its maintenance costs by migrating from Oracle Financials to Microsoft’s Great Plains enterprise resource planning (ERP) business suite.

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By  Peter Branton Published  March 20, 2005

Manufacturing firm Abu Dhabi Holding Corporation (ADHC) is slashing its maintenance costs by migrating from Oracle Financials to Microsoft’s Great Plains enterprise resource planning (ERP) business suite. The company has changed its strategy after a four-year project to implement Oracle Financials did not produce the results it wanted. ADHC, formerly known as General Industries Corporation, owns six manufacturing companies in the UAE that produce products for industries ranging from construction to water bottling. According to an ADHC employee, the firm began its implementation of a solution based on Oracle Financials in 1999. However, by 2003 it had only been able to reach a “live” stage at three factories, none of which could use the full functionality of the software. The ADHC employee described the Oracle implementation as “a complete failure,” claiming that it did not serve the purpose ADHC had bought it for. “The results speak for themselves, it didn’t serve our strategic objectives and accordingly we couldn’t afford to keep the system,” he said. As a result, ADHC decided to look at other solutions, finally selecting Great Plains business software. The first phase of the project was completed by June 2004, thus giving three of ADHC’s factories and its head office access to the Microsoft ERP app. Data validation took a further three months. By using Great Plains, ADHC believes it is saving more than three quarters of its current maintenance costs, a sum in excess of US$100,000. “When you look at solutions you have to look at what you’re paying for,” said the ADHC employee. As well as reducing its maintenance costs, ADHC claims to have achieved better business results from the Great Plains implementation, with the firm now able to generate hourly-consolidated reports on its subsidiaries’ performance. Unsurprisingly, Microsoft is pleased to have won an account from Oracle. “We are very excited about this partnership with ADHC and that we have been able to deliver so much value to them with this project,” said Haider Salloum, marketing manager at Microsoft South Gulf. “We are pleased that ADHC recognised the value of our solutions to an enterprise as diverse as ADHC and we look forward to working with them to meet their future growth.” However, Oracle’s senior director of marketing in the Middle East & Africa, Ayman Abouseif, believes ADHC’s decision to replace Oracle with a Microsoft solution is a one off, and that few companies move away from Oracle solutions once they have deployed them. “Companies are free to choose whichever software vendor and implementation consultant meets their needs. The fact that Oracle is far and away the vendor of choice in the Middle East says that ADHC’s decision is the exception, not the rule,” he said. “Any IT project involves three elements: product, service, and the customer. Things can go wrong and a company can change its mind with respect to the solution. In this case we can definitely confirm that the reason was not the product,” he added. Microsoft and Oracle have been battling it out in the business software market for some time, but competition has intensified this year with both companies claiming wins over each other in recent weeks.

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