Information technology evolves quickly. EDP ​​(Electronic Processing of Information SA) was confronted by this reality in the early 21st century, at a turning point in its strategy. In 2001, a new company name, CIGES (Computer Center Management) SA, marked an opportunity for the company’s management team to adopt a new strategy.

Up until that time, the company had developed tailored IT solutions for public authorities (municipalities and industrial services, primarily), functioning as an IT service partner. As CIGES SA, the company would abandon the idea of ​​modernizing existing applications, as the cost was becoming too high.

Instead, the company narrowed its focus to collaborate with leading partners in the Swiss energy sector. Among its main partners were Energy Sion-Région SA (ESR), Services Industriels de Bagnes (SIB), and Services Industriels de Monthey. These companies were already actively preparing for the introduction of the Electricity Supply Act, as well as the opening of the market in two stages by 2009.

  • The ESR is a regional supply company and distributor of electrical energy, with more than 210 workers. It was officially incorporated on December 18, 1996. The ESR also manages other companies in the fields of water, gas, cable TV, internet and telephony.
  • The SIB is a communal authority employing 73 people and taking care of 10,700 clients. SIB is responsible for all municipal technical tasks in the territory of the Commune de Bagnes. Its employees design, build, operate and maintain the electricity networks and water and sanitation needs throughout the municipality of Bagnes. SIB also manages the SA Sateldranse cable TV company, and the energy management company SOGESA SA.
  • Services Industriels de Monthey operates and and maintains medium and low voltage electrical distribution networks. The organization is responsible for the distribution of electricity to all 8,300 consumers connected to the network, as well as the management of electrical readings and consumption-based billing.

With these partners and others, CIGES is now a center of expertise capable of providing services for municipal administrations and energy companies.

Developing a Compliant Solution for CIGES Partners

As part of a transition to the ProConcept ERP solution from ProConcept, CIGES opted for an innovative solution, oriented toward the future. John Cordy, Director for CIGES and its ESR and SIB partners, decided to use ProConcept ERP to build out a powerful solution that fully complied with the legal requirements associated with the liberalization of the energy market planned for 2009.

"We determined that ProConcept ERP was the best solution to meet the many requirements of the liberalization of the energy market,” Cordy said, “and we relied on the ProConcept team members who had knowledge of the energy industry.”

The fully integrated ProConcept ERP solution has replaced all of the company’s information and services management applications. According to Mr. Délétroz, project manager at CIGES, collaboration was an important element of the implementation project. "Our employees were perfectly heard during all phases of the project," he said. He added that the project deadlines were particularly challenging, with the objective of starting in March and having ESR live by September. "There were certainly critical phases of the project, but we could always count on our competent consultants and ERP partner," added Délétroz.

The solution allowed CIGES’s partners to perfectly meet the new challenges of liberalization, which all energy sectors are continuing to face. The transition to ProConcept ERP also allowed CIGES to acquire an open solution and position itself as an integrator of the solution in the Canton of Valais. "The program's flexibility and ability to meet the specific needs of the these industrial services are a major advantage," said Délétroz.

Today, the solution is used by more than 100 users across CIGES’s partner network, including Zion-Region Energy SA, Services Industriels de Bagnes, Monthey Industrial Services, and Power Service Liddes. The ProConcept ERP solution has remained flexible enough to be used by a company as large as ESR, with more than 200 employees, to one as small as Liddes.

Solution Evolution

With 40 years of experience, CIGES now has 15 employees and is known as a major player in the field of hosting and providing software for local authorities and energy companies. With the adaptation of the ProConcept ERP solution for its partners, CIGES has a winning bet on the future. The company plans to continue evolving the solution, too, with plans to roll out the HRM (Human Resource Management) module, OLAP statistics, and more.


Harnessing Swiss Energy

Ciges specializes in the implementation and support of software for local authorities and energy companies