Applexus: Innovate to transform
Innovate to transform is what global technology leader Applexus offers its customers in the retail, fashion, life sciences, consumer goods and manufacturing industries.
As the pandemic continues to shift the business landscape, Applexus helps its customers navigate the ‘new normal’ by offering advisory, implementation and on-going management of SAP technologies and Applexus innovative solutions.
Applexus delivers an intelligent enterprise through transformative business solutions, calling on its 15-year industry expertise and led by a stellar team of industry and technology veterans under the leadership of founder and CEO Sam Mathew.
“We are really excited at the current opportunities to deliver digital transformation around the SAP landscape,” said Nittu Thomas, Chief Operating Officer, speaking from the company’s headquarters in Seattle. “For our customers it is more important than ever to get digital transformation right as the industry changes rapidly. Along with SAP, we have the right industry expertise, people, IP assets and technology toolset to deliver this transformation,” he said.
“We help our customers modernise their technology landscape with SAP S/4HANA, analytics and other leading technologies,” said Thomas. Applexus stands out from other firms in the space by bringing industry-specific IP assets, methodology and add-on products to SAP programs to help their customers:
Deliver a superior user experience
Infuse actionable insights through analytics embedded within the SAP process flows
Automate processes to drive up productivity
“We have built specific industry-focused IP solutions and pre-configured SAP packages that help us deliver faster business value,” commented Thomas.
AI-powered digital solutions
The pandemic has forced companies to innovate at speed. Applexus enables customers to scale up their businesses with innovative AI-powered digital solutions which include InSITE for automated accounts payable processing, nEXIM for global trade management and SimpleRetail for digital store enablement.
“Over a two-year period before the pandemic, we built a platform called SimpleRetail that enables brick-and-mortar retailers to embrace digital channels, while increasing the efficiency of store operations,” said Sam Mathew, CEO.
SimpleRetail offers three main solution components:
Digital shopping enabled by SimpleRetail consumer apps for curbside pick-up, delivery or touchless in-store purchasing. It also enables headless commerce by connecting with any shopping or delivery platform used by the retailer.
The secret sauce for SimpleRetail is its powerful in-store module that enables high efficiency of store operations through features like efficient pick-pack and delivery of digital orders, and real-time visibility of inventory across all stores.
SimpleRetail offers unified pricing and promotions across channels, and consumer loyalty management that leverage AI to better manage consumer experience and drive loyalty.
“Customers have found new use cases post pandemic. A grocery and pharmacy customer of ours will be using SimpleRetail to schedule Covid vaccine appointments across nearly 200 stores for their large customer base,” said Mathew.
SAP Gold-level Partner
Applexus is an SAP Gold-level partner. “Due to our singular focus around SAP technologies, our partnership with SAP is deep and covers many areas that help us better serve our joint customers,” said Chris Couch, VP of SAP Solutions.
“Applexus has been a co-innovation partner with SAP and collaborates to build products that address specific white spaces in SAP offerings. Our solutions, like Simple Retail, InSITE and nEXIM are listed on the SAP Store and we jointly address market needs through these solutions.
“We are also excited to be partnering with SAP on the Retail Industry Cloud by helping to curate and deliver a composable retail solution landscape around SAP ERP,” said Couch.
“In addition to delivering SAP programs end-to-end, we also offer certain services as plug-and-play including program management, organisational change management, quality engineering services and data migration” said Norb Brumbergs, VP of Delivery. “We have built centres of excellence around each of these areas with an exceptional leadership team, IP assets, methodology and multiple proof points” said Brumbergs.
SAS: Improving the British Army’s decision making with data
SAS’ long-standing relationship with the British Army is built on mutual respect and grounded by a reciprocal understanding of each others’ capabilities, strengths, and weaknesses. Roderick Crawford, VP and Country GM for SAS UKI, states that the company’s thorough grasp of the defence sector makes it an ideal partner for the Army as it undergoes its own digital transformation.
“Major General Jon Cole told us that he wanted to enable better, faster decision-making in order to improve operational efficiency,” he explains. Therefore, SAS’ task was to help the British Army realise the “significant potential” of data through the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to automate tasks and conduct complex analysis.
In 2020, the Army invested in the SAS ‘Viya platform’ as an overture to embarking on its new digital roadmap. The goal was to deliver a new way of working that enabled agility, flexibility, faster deployment, and reduced risk and cost: “SAS put a commercial framework in place to free the Army of limits in terms of their access to our tech capabilities.”
Doing so was important not just in terms of facilitating faster innovation but also, in Crawford’s words, to “connect the unconnected.” This means structuring data in a simultaneously secure and accessible manner for all skill levels, from analysts to data engineers and military commanders. The result is that analytics and decision-making that drives innovation and increases collaboration.
Crawford also highlights the importance of the SAS platform’s open nature, “General Cole was very clear that the Army wanted a way to work with other data and analytics tools such as Python. We allow them to do that, but with improved governance and faster delivery capabilities.”
SAS realises that collaboration is at the heart of a strong partnership and has been closely developing a long-term roadmap with the Army. “Although we're separate organisations, we come together to work effectively as one,” says Crawford. “Companies usually find it very easy to partner with SAS because we're a very open, honest, and people-based business by nature.”
With digital technology itself changing with great regularity, it’s safe to imagine that SAS’ own relationship with the Army will become even closer and more diverse. As SAS assists it in enhancing its operational readiness and providing its commanders with a secure view of key data points, Crawford is certain that the company will have a continually valuable role to play.
“As warfare moves into what we might call ‘the grey-zone’, the need to understand, decide, and act on complex information streams and diverse sources has never been more important. AI, computer vision and natural language processing are technologies that we hope to exploit over the next three to five years in conjunction with the Army.”
Fundamentally, data analytics is a tool for gaining valuable insights and expediting the delivery of outcomes. The goal of the two parties’ partnership, concludes Crawford, will be to reach the point where both access to data and decision-making can be performed qualitatively and in real-time.
“SAS is absolutely delighted to have this relationship with the British Army, and across the MOD. It’s a great privilege to be part of the armed forces covenant.”