Epicor Software  Corporation, a global leader in business software solutions  for manufacturing, distribution, retail and services organizations, recently announced that it has fine-tuned its channel strategy to drive growth opportunities in the EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) region. As part of the expanded strategy, Epicor will be looking at recruiting new partners, particularly for key markets such as France, Germany, Russia and Benelux, and boosting its channel presence in the Middle East and South Africa. To support the ambitious initiative, Epicor has recruited several new channel managers as well as a channel marketing director.
“We have invested in our channel organization this year in readiness to support our expanded strategy and being able to work more closely with our partners across EMEA on new business development and implementations,” said Keith Deane, senior vice president for Epicor EMEA. “Our goal is to at least double our channel generated revenues within the next two years. To help us achieve this we need to recruit a number of new partners in our key markets, and boost the breadth of experience we have within the channel in other markets.”
Epicor will be looking at recruiting partners that already have enterprise resource planning  (ERP ) experience, typically with knowledge of the larger systems such as SAP, Oracle, Infor or some Microsoft solutions. Many may be facing a ‘build-or-buy’ decision, either having legacy products that are due for replacement, or looking at building upgrades to older products.
“Our sweet spot is within manufacturing and distribution but Epicor is also a great fit in other industries so we are not only looking for partners with manufacturing or distribution experience, but also those who have expertise within other industries or niche domains,” said James Frampton, channel vice president for Epicor EMEA. “We are, however, not changing the strategy of only recruiting a select number of partners. Unlike some of our competitors we don’t want a large channel with resellers that compete against each other. Epicor therefore offers true partnerships, often with some sort of specialism, perhaps domain or vertically driven or to cover certain geographic areas.
He continued, “It is critical to us that the partners we select to work with become successful and we understand that this includes achieving a good return on their investment within a reasonable amount of time. We therefore invest an increasing amount of time and resources with partners that have the right attitude and aspirations for success, working closely with them as an extended sales force.”
Many partners choose to work with Epicor because of its flexible and competitive products but also because Epicor is positioned as a visionary in the Gartner magic quadrant for single-instance ERP for product-centric midmarket companies .
Awarded ‘Top Revenue Producer’ for EMEA and Worldwide in 2012, MFI Consulting & Technology became an Epicor partner in 2010. This paved the way for massive geographical expansion. “Epicor ERP is the perfect fit for the challenging African market. It offers clients all the functionality that they need while being versatile enough to be able to grow with their business,” said Aadil Tharani, chief executive officer for MFI Consulting & Technology. “The Epicor ERP offering is far superior to that of most of the leading Tier 1 vendors, and it’s more affordable. Its popularity has been proven by the phenomenal growth we have achieved in Africa. Over the past 12 months we have invested heavily in the Epicor line of business yielding very positive results in Africa. We are now capitalizing on this investment by diversifying geographically and expanding into the Middle East.”
To support the increased channel Epicor has recruited four new channel managers to cover the Benelux, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Russia, and South Africa. Epicor has also recruited a new channel marketing director, Emma Rainey, to help partners optimize their new business development efforts, benefit from central marketing campaigns, and develop joint marketing plans so that they can continue to grow their businesses beyond the initial engagement period.
“We are looking for partners that are committed in the long term, who want to make a real difference to their clients’ businesses and who want to invest in visionary solutions,” said Deane. “To help them achieve success we offer not only one of the best ERP solutions in the world but also a comprehensive and structured enablement programme coupled with the assistance from some of the industry’s most talented channel professionals.”