It’s not often you find a software development company that operates a business in the field, that they are developing their products for?
Hi, I am Renier van den Berg, responsible for Software Development at Market Network, and we do have a restaurant that is used not only
for... well doing what a restaurant does, but also doubles as a training facility of clients staff and sandbox to test our intranet software in a real-time production environment.
To date, Market Network Intranet Software casually managed millions of rands in the past 6 years, when we started developing
the system. How Market Network Software got to this point starts with my passion for computers. Right from the first time, I
(aged 13) got my first self taught GW-Basic program to remember my name...well. That did the trick and sparked a deep interest in everything
However, after school, I studied mechanical engineering at college and eventually enrolled for B.ing Mechanical, Potchefstroom
University, which lasted a year and I changed over to B.sc Computer Science, which I did not finish - got a great job offer. But it
is in the computer labs in Potchefstroom, where I taught myself Html and started to build websites as a hobby, publishing at that
time curtainrails.com and rhino-thatchers.co.za.
At this point, I worked in the bottling industry with PET, injection molding, stretch blow molding, and everything involved there.
The experiences I got from working with Siemens S6/7 and General Electric Fanuc PLC systems, Festo Electro Pneumatics,
Palletizing Systems, state of the art Injection molding, and Strech Blow molding machines is what got me interested in
robotics...Not that I have ever built anything robotic, yet. Simply too expensive.
The whole time while working, I kept on freelancing, building websites, and one day took a chance, resigned as a technician, and
went at web development full time… Given the timing, web design wasn’t that big in the Orange Freestate in the late ’90s, and
mostly due to my lack of skills and experience, I failed gracefully. (Not the last time either.)
Thanks to my parents, that was involved in the restaurant industry, I had a backup plan. I worked as a waiter in the food and
beverage industry from age 15, it sort of grows on you. It took a couple of years, but eventually, I bought my first cocktail bar,
2004 Sky Lounge. The old school cash register really made life difficult, and it was time for a change. No money for a computer
system at that time, I started building one. The first version ran in Corel Quattro Pro 7, that was clearly not the right way. So, I
started learning PHP and built a system, which evolved into the complete Market Network Package today.
I can honestly say, that it’s because of this intranet system, that I have time to work on programming things. With only the cash-
up module, I saved myself 1hour, 45minutes per day, and there are many modules and tools in the market Network Application,
that free up time.