IFS Malaysia Gains Ground Despite Slowdown

Although many organizations are cutting back on investments and laying off employees to cushion the effects of the global economic slowdown, Sweden-headquartered IFS is continuing to gain ground in Malaysia.

The company’s IFS Applications, which is based on Web and portal technology, offers more than 60 enterprise application components used in manufacturing, SCM, CRM, financials, engineering, maintenance and HR administration.

In Malaysia, IFS has an installed base of 22 customers; this figure swells to more than 200 within the Asia Pacific region. Such customers include DiGi, National Semiconductor, Tanjung Pelepas Port, Mardec and Berger Paint.

According to Timothy Chua, managing director of IFS Malaysia Sdn. Bhd., IFS has recently secured contracts for four major projects in Malaysia, and is anticipating more to come in the near future from the manufacturing, financial asset management and enterprise asset management sectors.

Scheduled to begin in October this year are two community based projects. “The first is for the agro-industrial sector, which is being undertaken jointly by a Government ministry and Mimos; while the second project involves the telecommunications sector,” Chua said.

IFS Malaysia is also working on an e-procurement project for a conglomerate in East Malaysia; it is expected to go ‘live’ by year’s end, Chua added.

With these pipeline projects and potential sales opportunities in Malaysia, IFS Malaysia is poised to achieve its growth target of 50 percent this year, in line with the growth projections of IFS worldwide.

Along with such a positive outlook for revenue generation, IFS Malaysia is also set to invest even more in its in-country operations.

Chua said the expenditure related to activities undertaken by the company’s MSC-status IFS Malaysia R&D unit is expected to exceed the RM 5 million (US$1.3 million) mark in the next two to three years. Staffing levels will also increase to 20 people by year’s end.

IFS Malaysia will also be relocating to a new 9,000-square-foot office at Menara Millennium by the end of October, spending about RM500,000 (US$132,000) on the move. “IFS Malaysia has doubled its headcount in the last one year, and we are looking at adding more people,” said Chua, who added that the plan is to add another 10 employees by end-2001, bringing the total headcount to almost 60.

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