Intelligent CIO Middle East Issue 32 | Page 8


Pixcom and Avaya accelerate the delivery of cloud-based communications to SMEs

Sage and RAKBANK join hands to support accounting needs of UAE businesses

RAKBank ’ s CEO , Peter England , along with Director of Technical Services and Pre-sales at Sage Middle East , Mansoor Sarwar

Avaya Holdings Corp has announced it is working with digital technology provider Pixcom Technologies to bring cuttingedge unified communications and contact centre solutions to small and medium-sized enterprises ( SMEs ) across the UAE , all delivered through the cloud .

Under the Powered by Avaya cloud offering , Pixcom will market and sell Unified Communications as a Service ( UCaaS ) and Contact Centre as a Service ( CCaaS ) solutions that help SMEs to reap the benefits of digital applications under a fixed pay-per-month agreement , allowing them to expand and contract capacity as needed , while controlling costs . It is an attractive business model for SMEs as many are moving away from resource-intensive , in-house operations to cloud-based systems that offer on-demand access to solutions traditionally only available to larger organisations .
The Avaya solutions being provided by Pixcom support SMEs to deliver voice , video , data , and web communications applications and services to their teams , whether they ’ re in the office or on the go . The cloudbased solutions are also built on an open architecture that supports broad compatibility and interoperability allowing SMEs to manage their migration to the cloud .
Khalid Khan , Director of Cloud and Midmarket Segment at Avaya MEA , South Europe and Asia-Pacific , said : “ Digital transformation is radically redefining how organisations do business . For SMEs , cloudbased communications tools make it even easier to connect and empower employees so that they can focus on organisational growth . Our partnership with Pixcom underscores Avaya ’ s commitment to serving the SME community as a significant driver of the Middle East economy .”

Sage , the market leader in cloud business management solutions , and RAKBANK announced a partnership agreement . This would entail RAKBANK to offer Sage accounting software to support its business banking customers of all sizes and across all industries .

Through this partnership , RAKBANK ’ s business customers can benefit from Sage Business Cloud Accounting software at preferential rates . Sage accounting solutions will enable the bank ’ s customers to easily manage their businesses in compliance with Value-Added Tax ( VAT ). RAKBANK is one of the largest SME lenders in the UAE and is committed to the growth of the sector through strategic partnerships that provide efficient and convenient solutions to its customers . Five of Sage ’ s VAT accounting products were accredited by the UAE Federal Tax Authority earlier this year in March , and are on the Approved Accounting Software list .
On the partnership , Mansoor Sarwar , Director of Technical Services and Pre-sales at Sage Middle East , said : “ RAKBANK is one of the UAE ’ s most dynamic financial institutions , and it has a dedicated focus on small and medium businesses . They are aligned with Sage ’ s vision – to help business builders realise their ambitions – especially as Sage also started as a small business and grew beyond what seemed imaginable . We are honoured to partner with RAKBANK , and together support every type of business in the UAE with their business finance and accounting needs .”
Commenting on the partnership , RAKBANK ’ s Managing Director of Business Banking , Dhiraj Kunwar , said : “ Many SMEs face difficulty in the accounting and cash flow management aspect of their business , especially with the implementation of the VAT . RAKBANK ’ s partnership with Sage will offer our business banking customers new features that meet all their VAT and accounting needs . As one of the largest SME banks in the region , we are delighted to have partnered with a company like Sage . This partnership is in line with our strategy of assisting businesses by offering them convenient digital solutions that support their exact financial requirements .”
In a survey conducted by Sage in the first quarter , 37 % of small and medium businesses stated that they struggle the most with accounting , and added that they were ill-prepared for complying with VAT regulations . “ Entrepreneurs who are concerned about not managing their business finances or VAT effectively should look at implementing smart accounting products that are capable of automating the majority of these processes . Business owners should be focusing on their core purpose , rather than be burdened by administrative tasks ,” added Sarwar .
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