MIAMI — With the collapse of the international mortgage market and problematic federal housing programs, the dream of owning a house has become a distant reality for many people with low incomes in Mexico. To address the housing crisis, Échale a tu casa provides sustainable housing solutions to Mexican communities in need. As part of its mission to help the world run better and improve people’s lives, SAP AG donated software to Échale a tu casa to help it more efficiently provide materials and training to empower people to build their own homes. SAP donated the software at the 2012 SAP Latin American Partner Summit and is showcasing the results at this year’s event. SAP implementation partner Avantis donated all professional services for the project.
Échale a tu casa has a sustainable community program that provides resources to help people independently build houses for low-income communities in Mexico. As a result, people receive both housing and a marketable craft. SAP solutions and partners help Échale a tu casa, a small and growing company, better manage its expanding business operations from supply chain to performance management.
“SAP software and solutions help enable us to work more effectively and multiply the amount of housing solutions we are able to provide to low-income Mexican families,” said Francesco Piazzesi, CEO of Échale a tu casa.
Échale a tu casa uses the SAP Business One application, designed to be easy-to-use and fast-to-implement for small businesses as well as affiliates and subsidiaries of larger companies. The application covers key processes — from accounting and financials to customers and inventory — that are needed to run an end-to-end business. According to current estimates, the program is expected to deliver more than 10,000 family housing solutions between June 2013 and June 2014. The company anticipates the project will impact more than 50,000 people.
“Construction of a single housing unit involves approximately 37 different industries and the integration of at least 60 products. Additionally, for every 100 houses built, the program provides job opportunities to nearly 350 individuals,” said Gilberto Anaya, CEO, Avantis. “These activities generate thousands of items that need to be tracked or recorded every day. An integrated solution such as SAP Business One helps control processes and inventories, improve efficiency and avoid additional costs that undermine the efforts of Mexico’s underprivileged.”
“This project shows how SAP is engaging with its ecosystem to help the world run better and improve people’s lives,” said Emilio Mariño, senior vice president, Ecosystem and Channels, SAP Latin America and The Caribbean. “With SAP Business One, Échale a tu casa can enjoy the same benefits as leading companies worldwide, including enhanced financial control and real-time data management. This joint project is expected to benefit Mexican communities by enabling them to enjoy access to a decent, dignified housing solution.”
Started as a non-profit, Echale a tu casa is now a for-profit organization working with SAP corporate social responsibility (CSR) affiliate Ashoka Emprendedores Sociales. SAP collaborates with Ashoka globally as part of its focus on supporting entrepreneurship with technology, employee talent and capital. Ashoka has one of the largest networks of social entrepreneurs worldwide and helps SAP identify entrepreneurs and small businesses globally.
Échale a tu casa focuses on the construction of social housing units that are collaboratively built by families within a community and who are paid for their efforts. They use locally available, environmentally-friendly materials to construct top-quality homes. The organization helps to create citizen committees, which can then handle the project through various stages from design, as guided by a team of architects specifically trained to construct social housing solutions, to financing and actual construction of the project. This type of domestic leadership enables housing solutions to meet local needs and preferences. As such, construction varies significantly from one region to another. Based on this model, the program has delivered over 2,000 houses in nine Mexican states and has about 2,200 more underway.
SAP has provided technology donations to more than 5,000 non-governmental and non-profit organizations. A combination of software, training and other services from SAP helps recipients improve critical business areas such as performance management, fundraising operations and donor reporting.