Sage eyes CRM space

Enterprise software specialist Sage is talking up its CRM solutions this week as it capitalises on the lack of customer-focused systems in the Middle East market.

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By  Administrator Published  September 9, 2007

Enterprise software specialist Sage is talking up its CRM solutions this week as it capitalises on the lack of customer-focused systems in the Middle East market.

"There are only a handful of CRM solutions out there in the market - and we have two of them," says Marc Van der Ven, managing director, Sage Software Middle East.

"Among some of the other CRM players there is a perception that the Middle East is not mature enough for CRM - but this is a false perception," he adds.

This year, in addition to a larger stand at GITEX Technology Week, Sage has also recruited partners, local and global, to help demonstrate its latest offerings.

These include vertical solutions from UAE-based Triad Software, which has developed a CRM system specifically aimed at the real-estate industry - aiming to target what Triad describes as the UAE's US$230 billion real-estate market.

"Remote and timely access to a web-based CRM application, which is linked to the company's back office, allows faster real-time updates from the sales team on the ground. This is a strategic imperative for all real estate companies to maintain customer service levels," explains RS Moni, CEO of Triad Software.

Another system on show is from Sage's Jordanian partner UBA, designed for customer service centres.

This segment is a growing industry in Jordan, as well as in countries such as Egypt, where outsourced contact centres are growing in number. "This product was first developed for National Arab Motors, the Kia distributor in Jordan. With three service centres across he country, the company quickly realised the value that CRM can bring to its customers," says Hazem Al Bawab, managing partner of UBA.

Sage's Van der Ven is very confident of the vendor's ability to take on its main competitors, but says his biggest problems are the Middle East's endemic skills shortage, and the mobility of labour around the region.

"Of course, one solution is to recruit and train nationals from the Middle Eastern markets - but this is a long-term solution, and doesn't solve the immediate problem," explains Van der Ven.

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