Cloud-based Accounting Software 1Suite Provides Support for Nigeria’s SMEs

Cloud-based Accounting Software 1Suite Provides Support for Nigeria’s SMEs

Uche Aniche, co-founder of 1Suite, says the cloud-based accounting software developed for owners of small businesses will encourage them to keep proper financial records. The main reason: it helps them to overcome the various challenges often encountered in finance record keeping.

While the software was supposed to launch in February, the debut date has been pushed to March, when its current beta phase will be completed. Aniche’s team has stretched the preparation phase — taking in suggestions, testing and certifying them. This, he believes will ultimately improve the basis of what his service is all about.

Quality Record Keeping Talent

“Keeping record of revenue and tracking expenses is even more important. This is where most small business owners fail the most. They either don’t know how to, and don’t have resources to hire quality talents to help out,” he told AFKInsider.

“The JAWS ratio gets out of proportion and they fold up. Our product will help them keep an eye on their financial transactions while they focus on their core tasks.”

He added that record keeping is very important for SME companies because it helps owners decipher what areas of business are profitable — and what components are contributing to losses. 1Suite offers small businesses affordable software, compared to foreign products which are often in a higher price range.

“We have expensive software that is highly westernized. Wasn’t built with and for our local economy, hence most of the features are out of sync with our local realities forcing accountants and auditors to do extra work to adapt them for use,” Aniche said of foreign software options.

Standardization Slip-Ups

“Using an example of the very basic — most of the accounting systems that exist don’t even have Naira as a currency (in fact English Language doesn’t recognize Naira). There are a lot other systems that exist in the fully developed economy for instance which the accounting systems recognize that we don’t recognize here yet.”

While mentioning the ongoing standardization that exists within accounting, he said a lot still needs to be done.

“Until then, the existing systems are not suitable for Nigerian and I dare say African companies. Have you ever gone to buy something and get your receipt with your figure in dollars though you paid in Naira?” he asked.

According to Aniche, 1Suite will best serve business owners that are not accountants. Leaving out “professional jargon,” his software aims to be less complex as all business owners don’t have extensive PC experience.

Cloud-based Software and Mobile Growth

Concerning the feasibility of cloud-based software in Nigeria, the self taught graphics and web developer said internet service has improved and is still improving in Nigeria.

“Internet Penetration is on the ascendance. Glo’s Fiber optic is at the moment being brought inland having landed the shores almost two years. MainOne is already operational and expanding,” he said. “Mobile Penetration is already over 100 million and immediately after the launch, we plan to get the mobile version out.”

To use the service, which is currently free of charge, interested users enter their names and provide a valid email address that will need to be confirmed.

“The system automatically creates a chart of accounts for you which you can customize once setup is finished. You can go straight up and start raising quotes or invoices,” Aniche added.

The platform currently has more than 100 users who are providing feedback to the developers. Top on the list of their responses are inquiries about mobile versions that Aniche said would be released soon after the official launch of the desktop version next month.

“A lot of them want the mobile version. But, we have to get the desktop version out first. The app itself isn’t mobile ready yet. We’d build that immediately after releasing the desktop version. We want to build native apps – iOS, Android and then Windows,” he told AFKInsider.

He also revealed that when the platform is officially launched, users will pay about US$15 (NGN2.500) monthly for the service. In the first year of launch, the company’s target is to get 5,000 users.

“We are providing a solution that we believe Nigerian businesses need and which they’ll be proud of. We will really appreciate their support as a tech start-up,” he said.