Sapphire Wins Contract to Supply Powerlite with SAP Business One

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Sapphire today announced that Powerlite, a Leeds-based manufacturing company will be implementing a 16 user SAP Business One solution to help speed up operations and improve the quality of business and financial reporting.

Powerlite manufacture and sell a wide range of high quality light fittings to wholesalers within Europe. Powerlite works within a very competitive market – especially with an increased profile of cheaper Chinese products now entering the European marketplace. The key differentiators on which Powerlite’s business is based include: quality of product, excellent, friendly after sales service, the variety of product lines and flexibility towards their customers. From a financial and competitive viewpoint obtaining fast, accurate and meaningful information is critical to Powerlite in order to keep one step ahead of competition.

Upon joining the company in November 2004, Alistair Wright, Financial Controller for Powerlite found that the system being used at that time was coming to the end of its life. Alistair comments “It soon became apparent that the system was running the company - rather than the company running the system - due mainly to it’s age and inflexibility. Alistair also found that there was no real quality of information - meaning any reports that were generated weren’t fully trustworthy. Alistair says “it seemed to me that an awful lot of man-hours were carrying out tasks that should be done automatically within an ERP system”.

To resolve these problems Alistair and a specially appointed Project Team decided to look for a new solution. Alistair says “Firstly, we needed a system that could provide the reports we wanted, when we wanted them. Secondly, price was pivotal in the decision. There were some good products on the market… but, at the end of the day, we didn’t have an unlimited budget. Thirdly, we needed a system that was user friendly and wouldn’t take the team long to learn how to get the most from it.”

The answer was SAP Business One. Alistair says “Once we had reviewed a few products it became clear that SAP Business One would provide the best fit for Powerlite’s requirements. The ease of extracting data was a big plus, along with its user-friendly interface. Another problem that SAP Business One would help us overcome is that we are spread over 2 sites - the factory being one site - and the finished goods/offices the other, so speedy communication is imperative. This then requires us to have a seamless link between all modules - which SAP Business One has. The whole project team was thoroughly impressed with SAP Business One - especially the ease of drill downs to find linked information from financials through to stock control or sales order processing”.

Alistair continues “we employed Sapphire to lead us through our implementation as having been involved with them before - and having seen the quality of their work – I knew that they could get the job done”.

Ralph Bolton, Sapphire’s Technical Director concludes “By being a smaller player in a highly competitive market, Powerlite has to operate with much less margin for error than their larger counterparts. SAP Business One will provide Powerlite with the tools required not only to make critical business decisions but to successfully achieve long term profitable growth.”

About Powerlite

For 20 years, Powerlite has manufactured high-quality lighting products in the UK for a wide variety of end-users. Powerlite has a coveted reputation for style, cutting-edge technology and excellent prices that has provided it with the success it enjoys today. As both designer and manufacturer of its own products, Powerlite products come with a built-in guarantee of high-quality, as well as being tested to BS EN 60598 and quality-assured to ISO 9001.

About Sapphire Systems plc

Sapphire Systems plc a global leading SAP Business Partner. Since 1986, Sapphire has offered their clients wide-ranging practical expertise in selecting and implementing advanced financial accounting and business management solutions. Sapphire was originally founded in 1986 and today provides software, services, support and advice from their offices in London and Manchester to some 450 customers worldwide.

About SAP

SAP is the world’s leading provider of business software solutions. SAP® solutions are designed to meet the demands of companies of all sizes—from small and midsize businesses to global enterprises. Today, more than 21,600 customers in over 120 countries run more than 69,700 installations of SAP® software. With subsidiaries in more than 50 countries, the company is listed on several exchanges, including the Frankfurt stock exchange and NYSE under the symbol “SAP.”

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Laura Coles