Staffordshire software company eg solutions plc is making substantial business inroads in South Africa – with help from UK Trade & Investment.

Based in Dunston Business Village, eg specialises in operations management solutions to enable blue-chip companies to improve their performance.

It provides software and training services to deliver a consistent approach to managing work, people and processes anywhere in the world. Three years ago, the company turned to UK Trade & Investment for help in targeting export markets, and worked with the Staffordshire international trade team.

The company embarked on UKTI’s Passport to Export initiative and using a Market Selection Tool as part of the process, UKTI was able to help eg match its strengths to the most attractive market segment. This led to the company establishing a subsidiary in Johannesburg two years ago.

Since then eg has secured five new clients within the country and recently announced three major contracts, which have opportunities for further roll-outs in the future. The South African office, based in Nelson Mandela Square, Sandton, has ten employees.

The subsidiary recently achieved BBBEE (Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment) Level 2 status for this territory – 75 per cent of recruited staff are black Africans, compared with the target of 60 per cent within five years.

It is also helping the community by providing educational equipment, clothes and toys to a crèche which cares for 160 pre-school children in a township in Soweto.

Wendy Jeavons, managing director of eg’s South African subsidiary, made a permanent move from the UK in January 2007. She said: “The last two years have been a very exciting time for us.

“We have worked with one of the leading banks in South Africa and our most recent success is a proof of concept project for a major short term insurance company which has led to a roll out to 600 staff across six new locations.

“I’m delighted to be leading the operation in South Africa and to be working with our local developers. The future looks extremely bright and I’m looking forward to growing the business and the team even further.”

Chief executive Elizabeth Gooch said: “We had already commenced our international strategy when we were introduced to UK Trade & Investment but through a market selection exercise, which included using a software-based Market Selection Tool, we have identified further markets and been able to trade in a second country.