Northland power company Top Energy will become the latest in the electricity sector to run on SAP after selecting SAP Business All-in-One this week with Soltius New Zealand Ltd as their implementation partner.

Top Energy will use the SAP solution for Finance, Logistics, Enterprise Asset Management and Project Management, replacing their Microsoft Navision software and automating a range of manual processes. They are the third mid-size company from the electricity sector to select SAP since late 2010.

Top Energy Group CEO Russell Shaw says that their legacy system was no longer suitable for their needs. “To deliver the functionality required of a large, asset focused business, we had developed many customisations and add-ons to our base ERP.  The result was lacking in efficiency and did not give us the confidence we required for comprehensive control over these activities.

“Our investigations confirmed that SAP will deliver a result to meet our requirements.  Soltius have been responsible for the majority of recent enterprise asset maintenance SAP implementations and our reference checking showed solid support from their customers.

“Implementing SAP will give us a fully integrated end to end solution, allowing us to retire the multiple smaller systems and customisations we presently have.  Our strategic vision for Top Energy shows the need for IT systems that can handle significant growth and we are confident that SAP will support our ability to do this.”

Both Christchurch lines maintenance contractor Connetics and Hamilton-based power distribution company WEL Networks have implemented SAP Business All-in-One with Soltius as their partner over the past two years. Other Soltius clients include DELTA Utility Services, Unison and utilities company Watercare, who went live with their SAP solution in 2011. The Top Energy implementation project kicks off this month.

Soltius Director Jim Brodie says that SAP has made inroads in the sector because of the solution’s ability to manage the diverse range of activities in which these companies now engage, from lines maintenance and contracting to emerging requirements such as smart metering.    

“The demands being placed on these companies by rapid changes in their industry, such as fiber deployment, smart metering and next generation networks, means a single, integrated solution is essential.

“We have seen a growing acceptance of SAP in the New Zealand mid-market over the past five years and SAP continues to invest in its core ERP software, offering a functionally-rich solution for these companies.”