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Neptune Software has gained two new takers in Uganda for its flagship Rubikon core banking system, Uganda Development Bank and a start-up bank, Top Finance. The vendor has also inked a couple of deals in Kenya for its microfinance solution, Orbit-R.

Uganda Development Bank (UDB), a government-owned bank, is in the early stages of implementing the flagship core banking solution, Rubikon, supplied by Neptune Software. According to the vendor’s regional director, East Africa, Edward Makole, the bank is currently at the infrastructure/hardware procurement stage and is scheduled to launch in early Q1 2014. 

UDB opted for Rubikon in early October this year to replace home-grown legacy solutions, says Makole. The bank evaluated a number of regional players throughout its selection process, which spanned around 24 months. These included Craft Silicon, Nagalakshmi Solutions, MFI Document Solutions, Techno Brain, Next Technologies, and Computer Point.

Edward Makole, Neptune SoftwareMeanwhile, Top Finance Bank, a start-up in Uganda, is about to commence with its Rubikon deployment. Makole comments that the new bank is currently under formation, with the implementation process at the planning stage. ‘It is expected to kick off as soon as the staff recruitment and premise refurbishment is complete,’ he says. Other project stages will include user training, model bank set-up, user acceptance testing (UAT) and system integration. A go-live date of January 2014 has been provisioned. 

Top Finance Bank opted for the new technology in September this year to ‘conduct its day-to-day banking operations’, Makole remarks. Selected modules include customer, deposits and loans management, credit application, general ledger, cash and teller management, transaction processing, business process management, enterprise reporting, fixed assets, document management and internet banking.  

According to the IBS Sales League Table submissions, the vendor has previously claimed one other Rubikon client in Uganda (IBS, March 2013, IBS Sales League Table 2013). This was Pearl Microfinance. However, Makole says the MFI ‘went into voluntary liquidation earlier this year’, and has since been ‘excluded from the headcount in Uganda’.

Elsewhere in Africa, Neptune is rolling out its microfinance solution, Orbit-R, at two new Kenyan MFI client sites. The first is Naku Sacco, a savings and credit co-operative based in Nairobi. According to Makole, Naku Sacco is currently installing, setting up and configuring the new software, with a go-live date of 31st January 2014 in mind. 

Orbit-R will oust the Visual Asmas software, supplied by local vendor, Computer Castles. Naku Sacco selected Orbit-R in September 2013, Makole says, along with a range of modules such as credit application, cash and teller management, transaction processing, business process management, enterprise reporting and interface capability to M-Pesa, a local mobile banking services provider. 

The second taker is Century Deposit Taking Microfinance Limited. It opted for Orbit-R in early October 2013, with plans to throw out its legacy Bankers Realm core product from rival Craft Silicon. Makole remarks that the project will commence in the coming weeks and a launch date is set for Q1 2014.

Prior to inking the deal with Neptune, Century carried out a ‘lengthy and rigorous’ selection process, he says, which involved product demonstrations and site visits. Neptune fended off competition from the incumbent supplier, Craft Silicon, Temenos and India-based supplier, Virmati. 

The vendor now claims five Orbit-R clients in Kenya. The other three are Nawiri Sacco, Fortune Sacco and Molyn Credit.

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by Darshana Adanwale
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