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Al Gosaibi oversees Sage project in Saudi market

Gulf integrator AGIS completes software implementation for Al Rahji Holding as Sage hopes recent office opening will lead to more deals.

Accountancy vendor Sage has augmented the recent launch of an office in Saudi by winning an undisclosed contract with Al Rajhi Holding, one of the largest businesses in the Kingdom.

Al Rajhi has opted for the vendor's Sage Line 500 ERP software to pull together the operations of its seven different companies. The organisation believes the solution will allow it to speed up back-office operations, eliminate duplicate data and improve overall customer quality.

Sage managed the project alongside local enterprise partner Al Gosaibi Information Systems (AGIS), which also works with vendors such as Cisco, Microsoft and NetApp. The company boasts offices in Dammam, Jeddah and Riyadh, in addition to Bahrain and the UAE.

"With around 10,000 employees in seven subsidiaries, our operational processes are growing significantly and this created an urgent need to integrate the Holding company's information management system," explained Dr. Zeyad Al Hekail, general manager for IT at Al Rajhi Holding. "The first implementation within the group was for Al Watania Industries. This was gradually expanded to the remaining divisions, to help organise the communication and business processes both internally, and externally as reflected in our service to customers," he added.

Al Rahji claims that its priority was the ease and speed of implementation as it did not want to spend too much time customising.

A team of 11 consultants from Al Rajhi's IT team were heavily involved with Al Gosaibi's Sage consultants in replacing several other systems with the Sage software. Al Rajhi has 120 concurrent Sage ERP users and 1,200 named users. Prior to the implementation, each department operated as a standalone unit. However, departments such as logistics, finance and production can now function as one entity.

The group's divisions can also monitor the stock in various warehouses spread across a larger area and where physical verification is considered difficult.

"By implementing a single system to integrate the entire business, Al Rajhi's management and employees have experienced clear and tangible benefits in their day to day activity as well as overall processes," claimed Marc Van der Ven, managing director at Sage Middle East. "We've seen a number of Saudi businesses make the move to adopting a sophisticated IT infrastructure, to meet the new and forthcoming competition challenges of the market," he concluded.

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