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Du engage – Video-based avatar puts customers in control of their debt, improving recovery rates while reducing costs

New Consumer engagement software for debt collection announces a 91% engagement rate in a pilot campaign

Video-based avatar puts customers in control of their debt, improving recovery rates while reducing costs

The Digital Sheriff and SCAD Software have launched dū-engage, a cloud-based consumer engagement platform which uses a video avatar to take a personalized approach to consumer debt collection via SMS and email. In a pilot project dū-engage achieved a 91% engagement rate and recovered over £2,8m of aged debt within four weeks and arrangements to pay debts off from consumers of over £1m.

The platform allows companies to send personalised video avatar messages to consumers via SMS or email (with Whatsapp as an option). The messages can be tailored for individual campaigns and personalized based on the customer’s situation. For example, a message can invite the consumer to respond by setting up a call at a time that is convenient for them, paying the debt or opting for a payment plan.

By contacting customers directly via SMS or email, with a sympathetic and personal message, du-engage overcomes the challenges of outbound phone collection, which can be intrusive and have notoriously low success rates. The platform is easy-to-use and can be configured in minutes.

Traditional call centre collection approaches are not only high cost, but struggle to connect with consumers; and when they do reach customers, research shows that, in 55% of accounts, it required 2-4 attempts and in 26% of cases contact was made only after 5-7 attempts.

In late 2021 The Digital Sheriff and SCAD Software ran a pilot project with a major city in South Africa. The campaign targeted 8,000 accounts with over £15M of outstanding aged debt. The initial outreach achieved a 91% engagement rate and resulted in over £2.8M of recovered aged debt within 4 weeks.

Commenting on the launch: Jannes Du Plooy, Founder and CEO of The Digital Sheriff said, “In today’s volatile global economy, debt collection is a growing challenge for many businesses. And as the number of vulnerable customers grows to record levels, it is vital to take a sensitive approach to collections. This is a very exciting solution that not only significantly reduces the cost of debt recovery for businesses, but also improves the experience for consumers.”

“We are delighted to be partnering with both SCAD Software as our Software Development Partners and Burford Solutions, our exclusive UK distribution partner.”

Andy Fensham, CEO and Founder of SCAD Software remarked that “This is an ethical solution that puts the consumer in control of their debt, helping them engage with the source of that debt at a time and manner that is convenient to them. By taking a sensitive and sophisticated approach du-engage addresses a growing issue in society across the world. We are delighted to be partnering with The Digital Sheriff on this solution and helping them take this to market across multiple Geographies.”

Bruce MacLeod, CEO of Burford Solutions commented that “We are delighted to be part of this development. As a team, we have over 60 years of experience in the Debt Management and Financial Services markets. We are building a new and innovative approach to debt management that we are very excited to be bringing to the UK. This is a multi-year deal which we believe will positively resonate with the UK market”.

For more information go to www.du-engage.com

For more information on SCAD Software, please visit: scadsoftware.com

For more information on Burford Solutions, please visit: www.burfordsolutions.com

Table Of Contents

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Dawie Martins

Head of Client Success and Product Management

With an illustrious career spanning three decades, Dawie Martins has cultivated expertise in diverse technology-related businesses across various sectors, including Retail, Hospitality, and Consultancy. His journey, which has taken him from a developer's role to Product Management, uniquely positions Dawie to lead the charge in Customer Success and Product Management services for our clients. 

In his role as Head of Customer Success, Dawie operates at the intersection of commerce and technology. His mission is to ensure the seamless translation of commercial imperatives into highly effective software applications that not only meet but exceed the outcomes specified by our clients. 

For clients engaging SCAD Software to build applications destined for the market, Dawie and his team offer Fractional Product Management Services. They become invaluable partners in crafting and maintaining a product roadmap, assuming the mantle of the product champion within the client organization. This collaborative approach ensures that our clients' visions are realized efficiently and effectively. 

Dawie's wealth of experience and his dedication to driving success for our clients make him an indispensable part of SCAD Software's commitment to delivering excellence in every project we undertake. 

Shawn De Wet

Chief Technology Officer

Shawn De Wet brings to SCAD Software over two decades of unparalleled expertise in software systems delivery. His career exemplifies a relentless pursuit of problem-solving excellence and a commitment to end-user satisfaction, achieved through meticulous system architecture and design. Proficient in core enterprise ERP systems, Shaun's recent achievements stand as a testament to his prowess, including the conception and successful launch of two cutting-edge SaaS products on the robust Azure platform. 

While Shawn's professional accolades are impressive, his vitality extends beyond the confines of the office. An ardent lover of the outdoors, as evidenced by his passion for mountain biking, Shawn's dynamic and adventurous spirit infuses our technological endeavors with a fresh perspective and boundless energy. 

At SCAD Software, Shawn leads the charge in Operational Delivery of Client solutions. He heads the development team and works closely with our valued clients to ensure they realize their desired outcomes from our technology solutions. His commitment to excellence and customer satisfaction is a driving force behind our success. 

Andy Fensham

Founder, Chief Architect

Andy Fensham's journey is a testament to his unwavering commitment to reshape the software development landscape. With a background in global banking software consultancy, he founded SCAD Software in 1998 with a visionary goal – to address the mounting technical debt that was becoming a liability for businesses worldwide. 

Andy's unique blend of technical expertise and business acumen empowers our clients with pragmatic, robust software solutions that yield tangible results. Recognizing the risks posed by outdated software, he pioneered an innovative approach to custom software development, consistently delivering large-scale projects at an astonishing pace – 75% faster than traditional methods. 

Andy's dedication not only safeguards our clients' future but also cements SCAD Software's position as an industry trailblazer. He continues to lead our innovation roadmap, constantly seeking new ways to enhance our offerings with more examples of how we can turn “minutes to seconds”. 

Shaun Orpen

Group CEO

With an impressive career spanning over three decades in the Technology and Telecoms sectors, Shaun Orpen brings a wealth of experience to his role as Group CEO. His journey began with the groundbreaking entry of Microsoft Excel into the UK market, a stepping stone that eventually led him to play pivotal roles on the UK Executive Board during Microsoft's meteoric rise from £10 million to £1 billion in revenue. 

During his tenure at Orange, Shaun spearheaded the division responsible for catering to Small and Medium Businesses in the UK. Since then, he has continued to shape the success of a number of small and global technology enterprises, leveraging his strategic acumen and commercial leadership. 

Shaun's unwavering commitment to the convergence of technology and business is evident in his track record of elevating every organization he's been a part of. As the driving force behind SCAD Software's commercial endeavors, Shaun is leading our expansion across the UK, Europe, and the USA. 

His steadfast ethical stance, mirrored by his partner Andy Fensham, forms the bedrock of SCAD Software's principles, defining our approach to client interactions and business dealings. 

Stephen Moore


Stephen Moore's illustrious career speaks volumes about his leadership capabilities. With a rich background spanning diverse industries such as Retail, Events, Technology, Telecoms, and Media, he has consistently demonstrated his ability to craft and execute growth, differentiation, and exit strategies in highly competitive markets. 

As the visionary Founder/CEO of multiple successful ventures, Stephen has guided five companies from their inception to remarkable exits and IPOs, including the noteworthy £117 million listing of Expocentric Plc on Techmark 2000. His track record extends beyond entrepreneurship; he has played a pivotal role in over 40 companies as a Non-Executive Director, Chairman, Consultant, and Advisor, raising more than £85 million in private and public markets. 

What sets Stephen apart is his global perspective, cultivated through extensive work in the UAE, US, Singapore, Hong Kong, and EMEA. This international experience enriches SCAD Software's strategic direction, making him an invaluable asset in our mission to navigate the complex landscape of digital transformation and empower our clients to achieve enduring success.