To ensure rationalisation and integration of organisational processes at its services and technology hub in Lagos, Nigeria, business communications solutions provider, Accelon has implemented a Sage Line 500 business management solution (BMS) supplied by Sage value-added reseller, Jera Computer Services.

Accelon is an emerging communications and services company in Africa, with its headquarters in Johannesburg, South Africa, and its initial operations base in West Africa – Lagos in Nigeria and Accra in Ghana. The company has already made significant inroads with customers ranging from large enterprises and government departments to SMEs covering Nigeria, Ghana and Mali.

For the enterprise market, the company offers managed private networks for corporate wide communication as well as centralised application hosting for shared and mission-critical applications at its Network Operations Facility in Lagos. The SME market is well catered for with a suite of internet related access and value-added services that address most small business needs; the likes of internet access, web/mail hosting, spam filtering and content management. The company is also set to launch a VoIP service in the medium term.

Addressing the lack of suitable infrastructure throughout the region, Accelon uses VSAT technology to deliver its services which is a boon for the regional business community. While its current primary focus is the West African region - with Nigeria as the primary market - the company is set to expand its services to the rest of Africa, including South Africa.

“We realised from the outset the need for a field-proven BMS with a tightly integrated third-party billing system that would accelerate the deployment of key applications such as logistics and inventory management software, and reporting, while offering excellent scalability for rapid growth in our customer base. Paramount to this was in-country technical support services and training programmes,” says Jock Anderson, chief technology officer at Accelon.

The BMS evaluation criteria also included the need for a system that was highly scalable. “The nature of our business means we have to guarantee we can accommodate thousands of customers in a very short period of time. Not only does it have to be able to support volumes, it has to be extremely reliable as well,” explains Anderson.

“We knew we would have a window of opportunity to capture market share so the management of logistics was absolutely critical. In addition to the services on offer, we also provide satellite dishes, modems and everything else our customers need to access our services. It is therefore important that we have a clear view of inventory so that we can order stock in time, have our warehouses appropriately stocked and make sure of timeous delivery to our dealer channel. This is a key feature of the Sage solution; it is particularly strong on the logistics and inventory management front,” says Anderson.