Software AG South Africa is looking forward to the second half of the year, with a new management team that is confident of growth.

The local operation has been among the more successful subsidiaries in the global company’s EMEA region over the last few years and new country manager Mohamed Cassoojee emphasises the strong position of the local branch.

“We have experienced some changes in management over the past few months, but I am satisfied that the current executive management team consists of the right people committed to executing on the company’s strategy of driving innovation for four megatrends – big data, cloud, social and mobile,” he says.

“Our leadership position in the SA BPE market allows us to help customers propel their transformation into becoming digital enterprises.”

Cassoojee, who has held executive positions at both Oracle and SAP, has recalled Shiraz Khota from IBM to head up the financial services team and the Cape regional office.

“Shiraz was with Software AG in a sales position from 2009 to 2012, and was highly successful. His knowledge of our BPE solutions is excellent and he has been leading this team to success since he returned,” he comments.

“Riaaz Jeena, also ex-IBM, is the sales director: corporate sector and has extensive experience in sales at the highest levels. I am also happy to report that Ike Kunene – as vice-president: national sales – will be using his vast knowledge of both public and private sectors to continue his successful tenure with the company.

“Africa Tau, whose public sector sales team has performed extremely well, continues to lead this critical team as sales director: public sector.
“Barry de Waal retains global consulting services of Software AG South Africa as vice-president, with long-timer Diellie Schmutz as global consulting services director on the service delivery side. Stephen Sim is our CFO; Patrick Shields is our deputy CTO; and Sandi Ntshongwana looks after HR. We have recruited a new marketing manager, as well as other sales people – we call them regional sales managers – to fill some vacancies.”

From his own point of view, Cassoojee says he joined Software AG as he is excited by the direction and strategies the company is taking globally. In 2010 Software AG published its 2020 strategy for the BPE line of business to contribute 80% of their overall revenue. Due to its success and acceptance by markets to date, this target has been brought forward to 2018. “This is the strategy that we are currently executing on,” says Cassoojee.

“We were ahead of schedule in achieving the targeted results of our previous 10 year strategy, so we are now executing on the global 2018/20 strategy. The time is exactly right for us to offer our customers the benefits of the newest technologies. As our CEO said recently; ‘there is unprecedented demand for products around the four technological megatrends: big data, cloud, mobile and social collaboration. Our BPE offering addresses precisely what our customer’s need and helps them successfully implement their digitisation strategies. Additionally, we are enhancing organic growth through selective acquisitions’.”

Cassoojee points out that the acquisitions made by Software AG are not small companies.
“They all were leaders in the markets they served and represented integral components to the company’s 2020 Business Process Excellence strategy. We have integrated their product lines into our solution suite. And this has positioned us as the leaders in several Gartner magic quadrants, along with excellent ratings by other leading analyst firms.

“The webMethods acquisition in 2007 signalled Software AG’s shift into the world Business Process Management (BPM). In 2009 Software AG completed the acquisition of IDS Scheer whose ARIS product line uniquely empowers us to deliver software tools that our customers can use to become ‘Digital Enterprises’. This completed our shift to our current business focus of Business Process Excellence, or BPE.

“The traditional Enterprise Transaction business (ETS) has always been the foundation of the Software AG success story – indeed we have customers that have been with us here in SA for more than 30 years. Recent acquisitions, dating back as far as 2007 (webMethods), have allowed some of these loyal customers to modernise their legacy systems and enjoy a full return on the investments made in their business critical data.”

On a more personal note, Cassoojee comments: “I am a firm believer that people are our most important asset, followed by our customers and our partners. This is our eco-system. If one has the right people in the right positions, doing a good job, this leads to team cohesion, productivity, a performance culture, and great customer service.”

Software AG moves to new, larger premises in Bryanston within the next two months which will include an auditorium and new larger training facilities.

“By then we will have filled all vacancies and can look forward to a second year-half of fulfilling our KPIs. When we moved to the Lonehill premises we had 40 staff. Our full current staff compliment is 130. We are poised for growth and delivering on our value proposition as a market-leading enabler of customers’ transformation to becoming digital enterprises,” Cassoojee says.