Primavera BSS

A symbol of the awakening of technology

\\ Text Andreia Filipa Ferreira \
\\ Photography Daniel Camacho

Mirrored and rounded, the building of tech company Primavera Business Software Solutions (BSS) is one of the symbols of the business development of the city of Braga. Marking the landscape and beckoning to the glorious Bom Jesus, the home of Primavera BSS is the operations centre for the development of business management solutions, solutions which, since 1993, have placed the Portuguese flag on technology used by companies all around the world. Focusing on innovation and paying attention to the latest market trends, which requires greater speed in presenting services to consumers, the multinational founded by Jorge Batista and José Dionísio has enjoyed success in Portugal and conquered the African market, which represents about 40% of the overall turnover of Primavera BSS. With a workforce of 280 people, striving each day to meet the requirements of more than 40,000 companies spread throughout 20 countries, the Portuguese tech company is quick to adapt to new demands of the market, striving to remain in a leading position in the new movement associated with ?cloud? solutions.

Just like the season of the year inspiring the company's name [Primavera means spring in Portuguese], Primavera BSS was the awakening of something new. Recognised as a pioneer in the development of business management systems that used the Windows operating system in Portugal, in a moment of technological disruption in which the MS-DOS system started being replaced by a more graphic setting, the Braga-based tech company led, for four years, a little explored market. The venture began in 1993 when two friends trained in Systems Engineering and IT set off to discover the viability of a project that would develop software for the new operating system that was burgeoning. Travelling through Spain and France, Jorge Batista and José Dionísio found a receptive audience and, returning to Portugal, they began to develop an accounting application for professionals using Windows: Contalib. The first Portuguese software house was thus started, which today develops solutions for many areas, such as Public Administration, Civil Construction, Accounting, Industry, Restaurants and Retail, and also solutions specialising in management of logistics, expenses, equipment maintenance, as well as human resources management and company portals. Speaking of Primavera BSS's first steps in the market, Jorge Batista assures us that the challenges were huge, but that the opportunities outweighed the fear of taking a risk. «In 1993 we faced a huge opportunity in market terms, because, almost everywhere around the world, there weren't any applications or solutions for the new Windows operating system», Jorge Batista recalls. «We had heaps of ambition to mark the start of a new era and, somehow, Primavera BSS worked as an evangelist of Windows itself. We were that company that people recognised as knowledgeable in the development of solutions for a more graphic environment, which completely changed the user experience that companies were used to up until them in Unix and MS-DOS systems», the companies co-CEO relates.    

Primavera BSS was the first Portuguese software business to develop services for Windows.    

Setting the course for the sector in Portugal, Primavera BSS has been following and meeting the management requirements of companies. «I believe that we managed to pull the major market players towards this new graphic world. Today we have some 400 companies that are our partners, reselling and implementing our solutions», Jorge Batista highlights. Funded entirely by Portugal capital, Primavera BSS can currently be found in Spain, Angola, Mozambique, Cape Verde, São Tomé and Príncipe and the United Arab Emirates (with the recent opening of offices in Dubai), adapting its products to the cultural, tax and legal situation of each country. In 2014, the company's operations brought in 19.5 million euros, a growth of 9% on the previous year, with the African markets representing a major share of revenue achieved. «African markets correspond to about 40% of our overall business, thanks to the use of our services by more than three thousand companies, with particular emphasis in Angola and Mozambique», reveals Jorge Batista.

Permanently investing in innovation, in this new technological phase marked by the growth of a global market, thanks to products designed to be made available though the ?cloud?, Primavera BSS is facing concerns about conquering users. «The entire technology industry has to direct its business models towards the ?cloud?. We want to be, as in the past, a leading company in this new movement», the co-CEO assures us. And how will this leadership be achieved? «Having a better knowledge of company profiles and of the people that use Primavera BSS solutions, meeting the growing demands of customised services and quickly placing products at the disposal of anyone who buys them», he adds. 

Business management solutions developed for ? cloud? use are one of the concerns for the coming three-year period. 

With a well outlined guideline for the future, the Portuguese multinational lists the reconstruction of its product range, financial sustainability and customer satisfaction as essential pillars for growth through the next three-year period. Why? «Because this is what will allow us to remain competitive in the market we are already in and enable us to reach new ones», the co-founder of Primavera BSS concludes.