KSA Retail and Wholesale Giant to Run Better with SAP

SACO Seeks Greater Transparency and Efficiency as it Expands Scope and Reach

RIYADH, Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaSACO is set to consolidate its position as one of Saudi Arabia’s largest and most pioneering retail and wholesale businesses after agreeing to bolster key processes and decision-making with cutting-edge software solutions from SAP.

The project will initially see SACO implement a complete suite of Enterprise Resource Planning, Customer Relationship Planning and Business Analytics solutions to dramatically enhance SACO’s ability to make swift, impactful decisions in real-time while markedly slashing inefficiency across the company. This will include, among other things, greater alignment with its main supplier, US-based ACE Hardware, which already runs on SAP.

“SACO’s success over the years is entirely down to an unerring focus on what our customers want,” said Samir Al-Hamidi, CEO, SACO.

“As we expand our operations and seek to become ever more innovative, it is crucial that we embrace the latest IT technology and never, at any point, compromise on the customer experience. In this vital respect, SAP is the right company at the right time – an exceptional value-added proposition that will yield the full transparency and systemic integration needed to shepherd our company to the next level.”

With 20 stores, the 1,500-strong SACO is the largest total-solution home improvement superstore in Saudi Arabia, currently boasting retail outlets in twelve cities throughout the kingdom, more than 45,000 different products and 13 dedicated specialized departments. SAP’s input will not only help the household name run better, but also lay the virtual foundations for an ambitious expansion drive across the GCC and the wider region.

The latter is likely to prompt uptake of additional SAP solutions such as in-memory computing to handle increasingly large and complex data sets, as well as mobile platform capabilities for greater operational flexibility.

“SACO is a true Saudi Arabian business success story and an exemplary game-changer in the Middle East’s retail and whole-sale landscape,” said Sam Alkharrat, Managing Director, SAP MENA.

“SAP is honoured to help play a role in the company’s laudably progressive forward momentum and provide its leadership with the tools and confidence to act decisively when it matters most.”

SAP is teaming up with SACO at a time of notable success in Saudi Arabia, with a recent study by IDC, the premier global market intelligence and advisory firm for the information technology and telecommunications markets, naming it as country’s Enterprise Application Software (EAS) vendor front-runner with a 43.5% market share.

Moving forward, SAP’s profile in Saudi Arabia is set to become even more prominent thanks to the 12 March announcement by SAP AG CFO Dr. Werner Brandt of a four-year plan worthUS $450 million to up-skill local talent and drive sustainable innovation and growth in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

The plan includes recruiting more than 500 additional employees, opening several new offices and expanding the company’s partner ecosystem and the SAP University Alliances program. Additionally, significant increases will be made in the availability of comprehensive, innovative and localized service offerings.

SAP MENA will also establish a dedicated “Training and Development Institute” that aims to certify 2,000 new consultants within the next four years. This will triple the company’s existing consulting capabilities in the region and further support the localization of SAP solutions to meet fast-growing regional industry needs.

from left to right: Baker Aqtash, Senior IT Manager, SACO; Muhammad Fazli Sameer, EDGE Project Steering Committee Member (external consultant); Raed Ayyoub, CIO, SACO; Haytham Al-Hamidi, COO, SACO; Sameer Al-Hamidi, CEO, SACO; Sam Alkharrat, MD, MENA; Hasan Kidwai, Enterprise Accounts Director; SAP KSA, Arrab Tayyan, Senior Account executive, SAP KSA; Taha Almadani, Senior Solution Architect, SAP KSA

About SAP
As market leader in enterprise application software, SAP (NYSE: SAP) helps companies of all sizes andindustries run better. From back office to boardroom, warehouse to storefront, desktop to mobile device- SAP empowers people and organizations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively to stay ahead of the competition. SAP applications and services enable more than 183,000 customers (includes customers from the acquisition of Sybase)to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and grow sustainably. For more information, visitwww.sap.com.

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About SACO
SACO is a pioneer in the hardware retail and wholesale business, the largest total-solution home improvement superstore in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Established in 1985, SACO now represents the most innovative company in its field throughout the Kingdom. As an authorized dealer for Ace Hardware, SACO has the buying power to import the best quality merchandise from all over the world. Currently, there are 20 SACO retail outlets in twelve cities throughout the kingdom, with more than 45,000 different products on display extended on 2,500 to 22,000 square meters store space, with 13 dedicated specialized departments. In addition, wholesale offices are supported by professional salespeople offering comprehensive services and delivering items directly to customers. www.saco-ksa.com

Media contacts
Claire McPeak, +971 4 330 1777, c.mcpeak@sap.com
Neil Jaques, Wallis Marketing Consultants, +971 4390 1950, sap@wallis-mc.com