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Zambian-based Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO), an innovative not-for-profit company that is pioneering a way for markets and conservation to work together, has selected Sage ERP Accpac 500 and Sage RMS packages. It will form a solid base that will support the company's enterprise resource planning and accounting needs as it grows.

COMACO produces 'It's Wild!', a special brand of organic, value-added processed products, all produced by rural farmers in Zambia. The products are sold to urban consumers and the revenue pays for the cost of rewarding these small-scale farmers in the Luangwa Valley for supporting conservation efforts.

COMACO needed to put a system in place that could offer a scalable solution for company growth. "The number of farmers participating in the project has doubled in the last year and we are expecting further growth. We are currently operating from our head office in Zambia and needed to consolidate our stock and sales management data with six remote sites," explains Peggy O'Shaughnessy, the Director for Global Financial Services at the Wildlife Conservation Society.

Sage ERP Accpac 500 will be able to accommodate COMACO's head office structure, while Sage Retail Management Suite (RMS) will provide offsite and offline functionality to synchronise daily stock and sales movements. "Sage RMS is a robust point of sale solution that operates at store level in online or offline mode and has specific functionalities that are relevant to the retail and consumer industry," explains Keith Fenner, Vice-President of Sales at Softline Accpac.

The rollout of the new Sage ERP solution will be managed by professional services firm and Sage ERP partner of the year, AccTech Systems. The local support in Zambia will be managed by AccTech's alliance partner in this territory, AccTech Zambia. "Our existing track record and proximity to the COMACO project provided COMACO with the peace of mind it needed for the deployment of their new system," says Steve Miyanda, Managing Director of AccTech Zambia. "AccTech's alliance partner locations across the African continent allow us to support many NGOs with multiple locations," says Miyanda.

Tertius Zitzke, CEO of AccTech Systems, says a significant portion of the implementation and training will be undertaken locally by AccTech Zambia. "AccTech Systems will supplement the implementation, notably from a branch accounting perspective where Sage RMS will be deployed. Once the initial deployment is complete, a system blueprint will exist that will pave the way to roll the system out to additional branches, which translates into a cost-effective, user-friendly and scalable solution," explains Zitzke.

The main benefit will see manual processes replaced by an integrated system that will provide visibility to management, says Zitzke. Time-consuming data capture at COMACO's head office will be a thing of the past.

"The idea that a company can work to improve the lives of poor farmers by supporting conservation may seem too good to be true, but it is happening on a scale that is starting to impress even the most sceptical," concludes O'Shaughnessy.

AccTech Systems

AccTech Systems is a professional services firm that partners with customers to run their enterprises efficiently and effectively through the deployment of Sage ERP (Accpac & X3), Sage CRM, and Microsoft business solutions. Since its inception in 1994, AccTech has grown to be world's leading implementer of Sage mid-market ERP and CRM solutions. AccTech is accredited by Microsoft as a Gold Certified Partner with a total of 13 competencies. AccTech has through its channel of Alliance partners, representation in five South African provinces as well as 11 other African countries.

Editorial contacts

Watt Communications
Deidre Beylis
(011) 425 6290

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