Malaysia to be ‘vital’ R&D hub for Exact

  • Exact to expand regional centre in Malaysia with increased workforce and funding
  • Rollout of Exact Online cloud offering necessitated shift in ADC’s R&D focus
Malaysia to be ‘vital’ R&D hub for Exact

DUTCH software company Exact said it will be expanding its regional development centre in Malaysia by boosting headcount by as much as 50%, adding that the Asia Development Centre (ADC) here will also receive a “significant portion” of its additional research and development (R&D) funding for 2013.
This R&D funding would be used to finance the development of its new cloud offering, Exact Online, the company said in a statement.
The ADC houses Exact’s international software development team and serves as a regional hub for South-East Asia, the company said.
The R&D division here is an important focus point for the Delft, Netherlands-headquartered ERP (enterprise resource planning) company because it will fuel the expansion and development of Exact’s cloud portfolio which will be rolled out progressively in the coming months.
“As [Exact Online] represents a step away from the technology used in Exact’s other major product lines, we definitely need to form different teams within the ADC and seek out new employees that have the necessary skillsets to further develop our cloud-based offering,” said Hartmut Wagner (pic above), Exact’s managing director of cloud solutions.
The ADC started with an initial workforce of 56 people in 2000 and grew to 232 employees in 2012. The company said it is planning to add another 100 people in 2013.
In the early years of the ADC, the team focused on localising Exact’s existing software products for Asian markets and reworking these products to ensure they were tailored to regional customers, which are predominantly SMEs (small and medium enterprises).
Exact said its ERP solutions are designed for SMEs small especially those in the manufacturing, wholesale distribution and professional services sectors. Its clients in Malaysia include Secret Recipe, Slumberland Malaysia and Adecco.
The new cloud offering has shifted the ADC’s responsibilities, the company said in its statement.
“For the development of our cloud portfolio, we need people who bring different skills than we needed before,” Srinivas Sampathkumar, product development director of Exact ADC.
 Malaysia to be ‘vital’ R&D hub for Exact
“That is why we have been actively hiring and putting in place staff retention programmes which include career growth plans based on the expertise of the individuals,” he added.
Srinivas said that the ADC is primarily looking to recruit software engineers who are familiar with cloud computing and programming to join the R&D division. The company has increased its R&D funding in 2012 from 11% to 14% of total revenue.
Exact, listed on the NYSE Euronext Amsterdam since June 1999, reported 2012 revenues of €217.1 million (US$281.3 million).
A major part of the additional R&D funding will be ploughed into the expansion of Exact Online, the company said.
“This expansion of our regional R&D hub is an important milestone for Exact,” said Wagner. “It is a move in the right direction as cloud solutions become more ubiquitous.
“We are optimistic that we will see a positive take-up among the SMEs as cloud solutions will provide them with a most cost-effective option with the pay-per-use model. What we need now is the right talent that are the best fit to build these solutions,” he added.
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