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Masana Petroleum saves costs with SAP Business One

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Masana Petroleum Solutions, South Africa's only black-owned and managed
provider of lubricant and fuel solutions to commerce and industry, has used
SAP Business One to free-up operational savings and give the company
technology independence from founder company and shareholder, British
Petroleum (BP).

Masana Petroleum Solutions financial director Kholeka Mzondeki says: "Born
out of the BP stable as a black empowerment deal, Masana initially used BP's
technology systems to manage its own back-office.
"It was not an ideal situation because BP's business dealings, as part of an
international conglomerate, were more complex than ours so their system
didn't particularly suit the much more niched, personalised, and adaptable
approach we needed to take to our market.
"It was important, brand-wise, for us not only to be seen to be independent
of BP but to actually have decision-making control over our own data.
"As we were also outsourcing our IT infrastructure and SAP software support
to Faritec by way of keeping our operations as lean and focused as possible,
we decided to implement an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system at the
same time. We went with SAP Business One because we were growing at more
than 20% year on year and the solution is extremely scalable. It was also
affordable."
Ebrahim Hanslo, SAP South Africa channel and solutions manager for SAP
Business One, says that the Masana implementation ended up being a great
rather than merely a good one. "At the time of the planning of the
implementation, November 2006, SAP Business One was relatively new to the
market – as were Faritec and Masana. So the implementation could have been
quite risky.  Due to input from all sides that was both fresh and diverse as
well as  extremely focused on reinforcing the competitive edge Masana's BEE
status gave the company, the implementation came in on time, and met every
single requirement."
Faritec's Riaz Hamiid agrees. "Because of SAP Business One's flexibility and
the range and power of its various modules, it was a perfect fit for Masana
and we needed to customise it only in relation to the complexities of the
fuel and lubricants industry, in terms of pricing and discounts.
"Also, SAP Business One integrates very easily with third party solutions,
so Masana's FuelMaster technology is able to invoice SAP Business One
automatically – making Masana's administration at all levels much easier."
Mzondeki says that operational savings arising from Masana's overall
information technology changes, including the outsourcing of the contact
centre and general infrastructure to Faritec, will be in the order of
millions of rand.
Many of our other customers are on SAP solutions, creating integration
possibilities by adding to seamless customer service from point of order to
payment fulfilment.
"From a financial perspective, SAP Business One has massively improved our
reporting. I'm particularly pleased with the ability it gives me to be
pro-active in configuring reports myself and not having to ask our IT
department to configure them for me. I feel more in control.
"In fact, SAP Business One's impact on the company is pretty pervasive. Of
60 employees, 55 are SAP users – and almost 99% of our sales organisation
uses the solution to drive customer relationships and manage orders."
Future exploitation of SAP Business One by Masana will include automation of
procurement and billing – integrating that functionality with supplier and
customer systems – and extension of the solution's built-in e-commerce
capabilities.