Intelligent CIO Africa Issue 65 - Page 51


Headquartered in the Western Cape , Life & Brand is a dynamic casual dining group that offers authentic food and beverage experiences using sustainable ingredients . Among the eight brands in the group are Tiger ’ s Milk , La Parada and Old Town Italy . Life & Brand wanted to refresh its financial systems with a modern , cloud-based platform to provide more timely business insights to its management team .

To meet its business goals , the company needed to automate as many parts of its business as it could , as well as ensure that senior leaders have up-to-theminute business insights at their fingertips .
Having evaluated a range of offerings on the market , the company went for Sage Intacct because it offered deep multi-dimensional accounting and sophisticated visibility for real-time decision making . The software allows Life & Brand to easily view and analyse performance at store and brand level and run consolidated reports for the group .
Sage Intacct allows Life & Brand to generate reports on the operational metrics and unique business drivers , such as revenue or cost per head and profit per square metre or per seat . This empowers management with insights about performance at the store , brand and group level to make informed business decisions . In addition , Sage Intacct provides reports , dashboards , and visualisations ready in near-real-time for the Life & Brand management team to review .
Daniel Smith , Chief Financial Director , Life & Brand Portfolio , said : “ We were running the Sage Pastel desktop product as our core financial system , but we realised that we were starting to outgrow the solution as our business expanded and became more complex . In addition , we run the Oracle MICROS point of sale system at our restaurants , and we use the Kissflow platform to manage workflows such as financial approvals . For reporting , we use the QlikView business intelligence toolset .
Sage entrusts consulting and implementation services for its products to business partners like AWCape . After Sage introduced Life & Brand to AWCape , the solution provider worked closely with the finance team to understand Life & Brand ’ s business needs and propose an implementation plan that would enable it to meet a tight deadline .
“ We also worked closely with Synatic , a Sage technology partner that offers a hybrid integration platform to facilitate integration between Sage Intacct and the other business systems Life & Brand uses ,” said Jeff Ryan , Managing Director for AWCape , a Sage Business Partner .
AWCape collaborated with Synatic and Life & Brand to integrate Sage Intacct with the banking transaction feed , automating the allocation of financial transactions to the correct general ledger account . In addition , AWCape with Synatic also assisted in seamlessly integrating MICROS and KISSFLOW .
Smith said given that the group comprises eight brands , three companies and 40 restaurants , consolidating financial information and generating financial reports took a great deal of manual effort for the financial team . “ We wanted to reduce the time and effort it takes to generate these reports , so that our financial team can focus on growth and strategy rather than routine reporting .
“ We operate in a fiercely competitive , low-margin industry , where we are under constant pressure to improve efficiencies and drive down costs . To meet our
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