King Hotel Goes Online: The Case of a Small and Medium Enterprise in using E-Commerce
Summary: Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) usually face financial constraints that limit their resource development and hinder their technological advancement. In Egypt, SMEs comprise almost 99% of the non-agricultural private sector and 75% of the private sector in Egypt at large. It is an important contributor to the economy and affects a number of sectors including tourism.
The increase in competition in the sector has driven a number of SMEs to turn to the Internet to gain competitive advantage and to leverage their position and attract more business. However, the successful integration of what is still an innovation, into the business process and its application into organisational functionality requires careful institutionalization.
There are many challenges that need to be carefully handled in addition to a number of societal and cultural factors that are integral to the process that need to be adapted. The role of the change agent at the SME level is vital to the success of the introduction of the technology, its diffusion, adaptation and acceptance by the different levels in the organisation.
This case demonstrates the results of a study addressing the impact of introducing information and communication technology to small and medium sized enterprises in Egypt, represented through the experience of King Hotel in introducing the Internet as a platform for business development, the challenges faced, opportunities created, and lessons learnt for future implementations.