- Tausif Mulla
ZOHO targets SME's with its VAT integrated accounting software
The year 2017 has been a progressive year for the UAE's economy. Mainly due to the increase in the GDP from 2.1% in 2016 to the current 3.4% in 2017 (source: Gulf News). One another reason for this optimistic growth is the introduction of Value Added Tax (VAT) on majority of the products and services. It was partly implemented in month of October on carbonated drinks such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi.
From January 2018, VAT will be rolled out completely throughout sectors. Before I share my thoughts on how ZOHO is benefiting from this tax implementation, let me throw some light on what exactly is a value added tax? Value-Added Tax or VAT is a tax on the consumption or use of goods and services levied at the point of sale. VAT is a form of indirect tax and is used in more than 180 countries around the world. VAT is an in direct tax and it will help the government to increase it's revenue. For multinational companies and large corporations, VAT isn't a new thing but for micro, small and medium sized businesses (SME) this is a big deal. This is where ZOHO comes as a dark knight savior to the SME's. ZOHO is a well known global brand for its Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application. I have personally used one in my previous role and I have to admit it's quite a useful tool. Over the years, ZOHO has grown from just a CRM to a full fledged Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) tool and challenging the market leaders such as SAP, Oracle, etc. In UAE, ZOHO has clearly defined it's target audience i.e small and medium sized businesses looking for full fledged accounting software. With VAT just around the corner, it's the perfect timing from the software company to make the offering to the market. ZOHO is known to have subscription based model with all its products. The accounting tool is not different. Here is the snapshot of the pricing in the UAE market.
As part of their awareness strategy , ZOHO recently launched its first commercial in the UAE. Watch the commercial here
The ad has a humor quotient and draws the attention of the users. The ad shows a boss asking for his accountant who is not seen in the office. The account known as ''Kutty'' provides the information to his boss with few clicks on his phone indicating how simple is the accounting tool. It will be interesting to see how it helps SME's to file their VAT returns in 2018. Do share your thoughts on how ZOHO can ease the VAT implementation.