IFS sets up down under

Swedish e-business and ERP applications vendor Industrial and Financial Systems (IFS) has finally arrived in Australia.

The company has already set up 63 offices in more than 39 countries, including eight countries in the Asian region and has a staff payroll of more than 3400 people.

Currently operating in Melbourne, the company is planning an office in Sydney before year's end, according to Rob Simmons, IFS Australia's director. He said the move to Melbourne forms part of the company's global expansion.

The company's international markets have shown increasing importance in contributing to its sales figures in the last few years. The proportion of the company's international sales revenue (revenue outside Sweden) of total sales revenues was 52 per cent in 1997, 60 per cent in 1998 and 65 per cent in 1999. The company's total sales revenue was $US240 million in 1999.

Although his current priority is to set up an office in Sydney, Simmons said he is open to forming partnerships with distributors in Australia, including those outside Sydney and Melbourne, depending on what they have to offer. He also said that the decision to open a Melbourne office had immediate success, with China's third largest tyre company, the state-owned Guizhou Tyre, undertaking to implement IFS's applications.

IFS aims to be one of the six largest ERP solution vendors within the next two to three years. It is currently among the top 10, according to Plant Wide Research.

Gartner Group expects the worldwide ERP market to grow by 22 per cent in 2000, with the rate increasing to 25 per cent in 2001 and 28 per cent in 2002. AMR predicts a compound annual growth rate of 34 per cent between now and 2003. Based on these and other forecasts, IFS estimates that the market will grow 20 to 35 per cent during 2000.

IFS has more than 3000 customers, including Volvo, NEC, Akzo Nobel, Caterpillar, Saab, Nikon, Allied Signal and Ericsson.

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