E-BUSINESS solutions provider I-Power Bhd plans to build its business by expanding its suite of e-business solutions and professional information technology services as well as form strategic alliances to penetrate new markets, said chief executive officer Jason Chia.
“We expect to launch a few more e-business solutions this year. One of the new solutions is a data mining software, the Intelligent Business Information Miner and Modeller, which will be launched in the second quarter.
“We are also working on some business intelligence solutions and a knowledge-based management system. These are expected to be in the market by the third quarter,” he told StarBiz in an interview in Petaling Jaya.
Chia, also I-Power chief technology officer, said the company had doubled its six flagship e-business solutions since listing in January last year.
I-Power's e-business solutions include the I-Power eProcure, eCRM, eStore, ePortal, eHR and eAuction.
Chia said the company’s strategic business alliances had also strengthened.
I-Power is one of IBM’s independent software vendors and e-business solutions partners. It was recently selected as one of IBM's two on-demand business partners in the Asia-Pacific.
The company was also appointed SAP's A1 business partner to provide professional services to its customers in the financial services sector.
Besides IBM and SAP, Chia said I-Power was on the lookout to form strategic alliances with other market leaders to expand its market reach and customer base.
“We are partnering with the best in the world, IBM and SAP. These alliances will provide us with a strong referral base for new businesses and leads generation.
“We will leverage on their brands and extensive network to gain market share for our e-business solutions,” Chia said.
He added that four of I-Power's e-business solutions – ePos, eCRM, eStore and eHR – had been certified by SAP.
“This will enable us to penetrate SAP's customer base, as our solutions have been proven to run on SAP's technology platform,” he said.
He said I-Power had also recently tied up with some established bumiputera companies to penetrate the public sector and government-linked companies.
“We have submitted joint tenders with our partners to the Government and expect most of the decisions to be out this year.
“We have a total of RM35mil worth of tenders pending approval, of which RM28mil is in the public sector,” he said.
According to Chia, I-Power has secured several contracts in the past six months, four of which are with companies who are market leaders in their respective industries.
The four contracts, which have a total value of up to RM6mil, are for the supply of the I-Power eProcure to an automotive player, eCRM to an international hotel brand with over 3,500 hotels worldwide, eTrading to a property developer and, most recently, the ePortal.
Chia believes there is still tremendous potential for growth in the e-solutions market as the global economy becomes increasingly interconnected through the Internet.
He said I-Power’s focus would continue to be on the local e-solutions market, as it was still a very young market and would be a growth area for the company.
“Any expansion overseas will be via smart partnerships and centred on the South-East Asian region, as we do not want to spread ourselves too thinly.
“We do not discount mergers and acquisitions but for the moment, our focus is on building a strong base through organic growth,” he said.
Chia said I-Power's strength was in the retail and distribution sectors, having implemented solutions for companies like Amway (M) Sdn Bhd, eCosway.com Sdn Bhd, Sony (M) Sdn Bhd and Ni Hsin Corp Sdn Bhd.
“However, we see great potential in the financial services industry and have a highly skilled and experienced team specialising in banking systems. This will be a new growth area for us,” he said.
Chia sees a positive outlook for the company, going forward.
“We are working with more partners and our network is wider. In addition, our new alliance with SAP should contribute positively to revenue and profit from this financial year,” he said.
I-Power recorded a net profit of RM1.22mil from a revenue of RM3.4mil for the first quarter ended Sept 30, 2005.
On the company's second quarter results, Chia said: “Our results have met our revenue and profit forecast and we are quite happy with our performance.”
Currently, about 60% of I-Power 's profit comes from its e-business solutions division, with the balance contributed by professional services, consultancy and systems integration businesses.
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