42 Below raises a glass to SAP system

Outsourcing keeps vodka maker's licence requirements down

Vodka maker 42 Below has replaced its MYOB financials system with SAP's Business One product.

42 Below chief financial officer Stephen Sinclair says the MYOB system served the company well, "but we'd outgrown it".

Earlier this year, 42 Below went looking for a replacement. After recommendations from partner and SAP reseller RealTech and a casual look at the market for SMB financials products, the company selected Business One.

Among the factors that swung the deal SAP's way was the ability to report gross product on a regional (by country) basis, something not immediately available, but for which RealTech was able to provide a workaround.

"The others [products looked at] could do the same, but not in as timely a way as Business One," 42 Below project manager Cherie Attwood says.

42 Below operates in New Zealand, Australia, the US and the UK, and the ability to report gross profit from where transactions take place — as opposed to the warehouse location — is an advantage, Attwood says.

The Business One suite will go live at 42 Below in January and the five user licence cost $46,000, with an ongoing 17% software maintenance fee.

The small number of users reflects the fact 42 Below doesn't do its own manufacturing, Sinclair says.

"We didn't need something with a lot of bells and whistles."

He says it also means a common criticism of Business One — that its scalability is limited and when an organisation grows to a certain size the software needs to be replaced with SAP's MySAP or another product — doesn't apply to 42 Below.

"Because we outsource our manufacturing, we have lots of ability to grow in revenue but not in complexity."

42 Below is using Business One mainly for its financials capability, but its internet capabilities may be tapped in the future, Sinclair says.

"We're looking at our website and selling collateral such as t-shirts through it and there's some ability with Business One to look at that."

Sinclair declined to name the other products that were considered during the selection process.

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