Skip navigation
Skip navigation
You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser.

How do you become one of South Africa’s most successful, influential and established IT companies?

This year, JMR Software celebrated 30 years in business, within an industry that’s seen its fair share of companies come and go. JMR have grown significantly, since their 1987 inception. Today, they are globally recognized as a leading Data Migration solutions provider, employing over 100 consultants, plus support staff, and is now a significant multi-million Rand a year operation.

From small beginnings…
Unlike today’s venture capital backed tech startups, JMR’s inception was a little less traditional.

“In the beginning, there was just me,” says Mike Richards, JMR’s founder and CEO. “Our first office was a spare room in my house.” But, the start was anything but plain sailing: Mike explains: “I landed a big contract early on and needed a contractor, so I asked Virgilio Peneda to work for me. He was working full time for another company at that time, but I persuaded him to join me. He resigned from his job and officially became my first full-time employee – and then the contract fell through. I had no contract, no money and no way to pay Virgilio’s salary! But I said to him, ‘Don’t worry, I’ll find the money to pay your salary. And I did. Luckily I found another contract and JMR – all two of us – were solvent once again.”

However, looking at JMR’s track record over the past 30 years, it’s clear that luck had very little to do with it…

Never staying still
Right out of the gate, back in 1987, JMR began as a mainframe focused labour broker. But then another technology came along – open systems. It split the IT industry at the time, and JMR, like other organisations, had a choice to make: stay with mainframes or diversify. In 1991 they extended their recruiting division to include open systems. This proved to be an insightful move, as many of those companies who exclusively backed mainframes are no longer in business.

Then, in 1995, South Africa gained more attention from the international business community, and that’s when JMR acquired the rights to distribute a variety of international software products. Now, on an international stage, the next step seemed pretty obvious: why sell other people’s products when you can develop and sell your own? So, in 1998, the company established their Application Development division. Since then the model has been refined and improved, but the basic approach remains the same: grow new markets, and increase service offerings.

Today, JMR Software are internationally recognised as Data Migration specialists, with established products and services sold globally, such as BITSHIFT and eezi-Sign. Their reputation for delivering on their commitments is widespread throughout the financial software community: “We view JMR Software as part of our team. Every data migration project has been handled professionally, delivered on time and within an agreed budget,” says Kali Bagary, Sapiens VP of Professional Services for the UK, Nordics and South Africa.

Yet, JMR’s success is not based on ruthless tactics and aggression. They have their own way of doing business.

No compromise on integrity

JMR Software are genuinely a ‘people business’. When dealing with clients, they focus on personal delivery and commitment. And when it comes to their staff, people come first. They are a black empowered business, Level 3 BBBEE accredited, that rewards forward thinking, and genuine hard work.

Their ethos: ‘our people are our most precious asset’ and their commitment to contributing to the well-being of fellow South Africans, extends to outside the organisation too. They support graduates by providing experience of working on real projects, and are actively involved with local charity events.

Seeing all the staff together at their JMR 30th birthday celebration, one gets a real sense of the JMR ethos in action. Everyone is relaxed, included, and as Mike cuts the celebratory cake, there is a shared sense of achievement among all the staff. And that includes Virgilio – Mike’s first employee – who is still part of JMR, only today he’s also an owner of the company; as well as Ramona and Jenny, shareholders in the company now for over 25 years.

What next?

With new developments, and a watchful eye on new opportunities, JMR is going to continue to do what it has always done – deliver a personal service, keep its promises, respect its employees and clients, and be prepared for the next wave of technology within IT.


JMR Software (Pty) Ltd

An independent South African company, JMR Software (Pty) Ltd has strong international roots and relationships (particularly in the UK) that are built on integrity, expertise, capability and years of successful delivery. The company understands the importance of the data migration process and has developed its own set of tools - including its comprehensive BITSHIFT data migration solution - which follows a strict methodology and has been tried and tested with clients.

For further press information, please contact John Bancroft, JMR Software Sales and Marketing Manager in the UK at or call on +44 (0) 7967 388 308 or contact Susan van Zyl JMR Software Head of Sales & Marketing +27 (0) 72 408 0118.

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of JMR in the following categories: Business & Finance, Computing & Telecoms, for more information visit