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The Lesson from Freshworks' Dangote Software Deal

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Oracle, Microsoft, SAP and other giants are witnessing a really rugged competitor in Africa. Freshworks, an enterprise software company, is winning key customers.  It tells me something: there is room up there if you have something that offers value. That Dangote Group is now Freshworks should encourage our entrepreneurs: every vendor/OEM must demonstrate value, with cost, to win. Having a big brand name is not just enough. You must offer value both on pricing and service.

Yes, it is encouraging that small companies like Freshworks can pick up great opportunities: "The Dangote Group, the largest indigenous industrial conglomerate in Sub Saharan Africa, has deployed Freshservice by Freshworks, its cloud-based service desk software that helps modernize the IT teams along with other business functions.”

Sure, Freshworks is not a small firm after raising millions of dollars but in the world of SAP, Microsoft and Oracle, it remains a baby. This company is perhaps one of the fastest growing enterprise software firms in Africa right now. Its success should inspire many founders.

Freshservice  supports  Dangote group’s IT teams in the following ways:

  • Improved operational efficiencies and effectiveness as well as streamline compliance.
  • Increased insights into how service management team are working, map their productivity and effectiveness - letting IT support managers identify areas to focus to improve employee on-boarding and service resolution.
  • Added contextual support- IT service agents can start a remote session to troubleshoot an end-user or customer problem from within Freshservice, where the agent has context about the issue across group companies.

Previously, The Dangote Group’s traditional ITSM setup relied heavily on disparate technologies and processes. After implementing Freshservice, immediate gains were achieved:

  • Average response time reduced from 7.5 minutes in 2017 to 5.4 minutes in 2018 — a 38% improvement in the average response time

  • 32.4% increase in known tickets requests from 2018 from 2017​

  • Percentage of tickets resolved on first contact nearly doubled, increasing from 9% of total tickets logged in 2017 to 16% in 2018


Yet, FreshWorks is primarily competing with likes of BMC, ServiceNow, ManageEngine Service DeskPlus, ZenDesk, etc. Microsoft, Oracle and SAP do not have any strong offering in this space. That is how the market has evolved.

(some contents from press release)