Zoho and Telr partner to help SMEs in Mena with digital transformation

Zoho's Finance Platform achieved a 42% increase in new customers in the UAE


A Staff Reporter

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Published: Tue 21 Nov 2023, 9:53 PM

Zoho Corp, a leading global technology company and Telr, a leading payment gateway provider in the Middle East, on Tuesday announced a partnership, which aims to promote the digital economy by providing small and medium enterprises in the Mena region access to enterprise-grade technology from both the companies.

As part of the MoU, Zoho will provide Telr customers access to its diverse portfolio of over 55 applications at a special rate. This will enable them to move all their business operations — from sales and marketing to finance and HR — to the cloud.

Zoho users can utilise Telr integration from Zoho Marketplace to process payments and scale their operations across various geographies. The integration will enable businesses in countries across the Mena region, including UAE, KSA Egypt, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and Bahrain to accept payments in over 120 currencies. This will, in turn, help the transition towards a digital economy in line with local governments’ long-term vision to increase e-commerce’s contribution to the economy.

Hyther Nizam, President of Middle East and Africa (MEA) at Zoho
Hyther Nizam, President of Middle East and Africa (MEA) at Zoho

“SMEs often operate on tight margins and can be vulnerable to cash flow disruptions. Our integration with Telr will enable a secure and seamless payment collection that eliminates friction and reduces payment processing time and cost,” said Hyther Nizam, President of Middle East and Africa (MEA) at Zoho. “Zoho’s broad range of secure payment options helps merchants maintain a smooth customer experience, increase payment processing efficiency and boost revenue. At the same time, we will enable Telr’s customers to leverage our unified solutions to grow their businesses online.”

Khalil Alami, Founder & CEO of Telr, said: “We’re thrilled to announce our partnership with Zoho. This partnership marks a new chapter for Zoho users, providing them with access to our outstanding services and various payment methods, including all local payments, thus ensuring secure transactions for every merchant’s customer.” Alami added: “Together, we’re propelling the region towards a digital economy in harmony with government objectives. This partnership underscores our unwavering commitment to supporting SMEs in their journey to success.”

The announcement comes as Zoho’s Finance Platform achieved a 42% increase in new customers in the UAE, and 50% in the MEA region. The company also made significant expansions to its Finance Platform with 230+ extensions in Zoho Marketplace, and a dedicated developer portal. Additionally, it launched Zoho Practice, an end-to-end practice management solution for accounting professionals. These additions strengthen the Finance Platform’s ecosystem, helping businesses across the MENA tailor their applications and collaborate with their accountants to enhance their operations.

Nizam said: “Over the past 15 years, our Finance Platform has grown from a single app to a unified suite, and now a comprehensive platform that is the go-to for businesses of all sizes in MENA. Our continued investments in building a powerful ecosystem have enabled businesses to access the best enterprise tech available. The expanded Zoho Finance Platform ecosystem offers full customization, ensuring that the software continues to meet their business needs with unparalleled efficiency, even as they evolve.”

“The accounting landscape in MENA is changing rapidly, driven by technological advancements and new regulatory requirements. Businesses in the region are under increasing pressure to keep up with these changes. Zoho Practice will help accountants ensure compliance and deliver a more effective financial management, as well as added-value services to their clients”, he added.

Today, accountants across the region are expected to go beyond providing traditional services like day-to-day accounting, bookkeeping, financial reporting, auditing, and tax filing. Clients also expect insights on an organizational level, like how to curb spend, identifying additional revenue sources, and accelerating business growth. However, to provide these bespoke services with excellence, accounting professionals would require a holistic view of their clients’ businesses, in addition to efficiently running their own firm’s operations.

“As accountants, we always have to stay on top of various client requests, and the constantly evolving tax regulations, while efficiently managing our practice. Zoho Practice is a comprehensive solution that simplifies a firm’s day-to-day operations like client management, document management, and tracking services rendered. This increases productivity, helping us focus on delivering exceptional services to our clients, enabling them to achieve their business goals,” said CA Ugamoorthy T, Managing Director, Yuga Accounting & Tax Consultancy, UAE.

Zoho recently launched Corporate Tax capabilities in the UAE as part of the VAT-compliant Zoho Books to ensure businesses can remain compliant with the latest regulations. Continuing on this momentum, the company also launched an enterprise-grade Developer Portal. This allows third-party developers to build solutions easily that customize specific functions of their finance applications, automate routine processes, and publish the extensions in Zoho

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