SAP sees web, mobile and analytics as future of ERP
By Arif Mohamed Enterprise resource leader, SAP founded in 1972, is facing the slow death of traditional on-premise ERP. Customers with shrinking IT budgets are opting to outsource more of their core business systems. Meanwhile, web companies are offering to run business processes and applications such as customer relationship management (CRM), human resources (HR) and business intelligence (BI) over the internet. Once the kingpin of monolithic supply chain installations, SAP now faces competition from all sides. It comes from arch-rivals like Oracle and IBM to web pure-plays offering on-demand computing for a massive range of business applications. SAP’s answer is to embrace cloud Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) and offer new BI and mobile computing technology. It is striving to improve the usability of its software and to listen harder to its customers. As part of its fight-back, SAP has overhauled its executive team, made two big strategic acquisitions, and focused once more on its massive installed base of more than 100,000 customers. During 2009, it shed 3,000 jobs across the business, and reported an 8% drop in revenues in 2009, compared with 2008. With its fortunes inextricably linked to the performance of the application software market, SAP had little choice but to suffer with all the other application suppliers as IT users tightened their belts. Overall, its software product revenue, excluding professional services, declined by just under 7%, compared with a decline of 1.2% for the software industry as a whole between Q3 2010 and Q3 2009. “We had a very difficult 2008 tail-end and 2009,” says Tim Noble, SAP UK managing director. “But, as far as this year, 2010, is concerned, all regions are growing. We are continuing to show double-digit growth in software, and in the UK we have continued to show very strong performance.” The UK continues to be the fastest growing major market globally for SAP, with a 38% year-on-year growth for Q3 2010. Gartner research VP John Rizzuto says, “There is no denying that, in 2009, SAP had a difficult year when it came to revenue growth. However, it was able to focus on many operational aspects of its business to maintain and, in some instances, improve its financial position.” But it ended the year with an improved financial performance and a coherent growth strategy. Its third quarter 2010 revenues were just over €3bn, compared with €2.5bn in Q3 the previous year, with an operating profit up €716m from €619m for the same period the previous year. Although the results were slightly lower than analysts had predicted, SAP breathed a sigh of relief at having survived a difficult year and a half During 2010, SAP made about 45% in revenues from its ERP suite of applications and services, 18% from BI, 16% from CRM and 11% from supply chain management (SCM). The remaining 10% of its revenues came from other application software and services. SAP’s biggest two rivals are IBM and Oracle. The latter now owns several of the other big ERP/CRM players including PeopleSoft, Siebel and JD Edwards. However, in the past three years, SAP has made several strategic acquisitions of its own. Among these was the purchase of BusinessObjects in 2007, giving SAP new BI capabilities. The second was of database and BI giant Sybase in July 2010. This will give SAP users the ability to access, manage and analyse information on mobile devices. At a glance guide to SAP
German business software firm SAP was founded in 1972 by five ex-IBM employees. From the outset, the company had a vision to create business software that would help companies to run their operations more efficiently. SAP saw its fortunes take off with the mass adoption firstly of mainframe computing, then client-server, and more recently web-based computing. It managed to attract big-name companies early on, particularly to its ERP suites SAP R/2 and R/3, and quickly expanded its user base beyond Germany. Its users have included the likes of Coca-Cola and Cadbury Schweppes, but leading companies in all industries use, or have used SAP’s software as part of their operations. Over time, SAP has expanded beyond ERP into CRM, SCM, HR and finance, and many other niche areas of enterprise and industryspecific operations. The company has faced criticism over software usability, the lengthy time and cost of implementations, software management complexity, and customer relations. However, it is currently raising its game in these areas by overhauling user interfaces, introducing mobile and web-based application deployment, and working closely with its user groups. SAP has grown to become Europe’s biggest software firm, and one of the top enterprise technology firms, competing against other giants such as IBM, Oracle, Microsoft and HP. In Q2 2010, it announced its landmark 100,000th customer, with revenues exceeding €3bn in Q3 2010.


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SAP offers SAP Crystal Solutions.9bn operating income. SAP also recognises the need to support the agility of business processes to allow organisations to respond to that changing demand. and a world leader in enterprise applications and support.921 employees in 50 countries. SAP announced it will partner with hardware partners HP and IBM to produce HANA. It includes core business applications such as ERP.” says Cook. and helped it to expand into areas where it was previously weak. with €2. This appliance will provide in-memory data management (which SAP calls NewDB). SAP SCM & SAP SRM Also includes: SAP solutions for sustainability. and its software performs well in high-volume. This allows it to interoperate with products from other suppliers. a modular system that it sells across a spectrum of industries. he says.000 in 120 countries. high-performance environments. SAP is headquartered in Walldorf. Alloy. SCM. query and calculation acceleration. • Customers: 100. as well as a multidimensional modelling environment. and the SAP BusinessObjects portfolio of BI applications. Products • SAP Business Suite Core applications: SAP CRM. which is a SAP user. supplier relationship management (SRM). via the cloud. is an important piece of the analytics picture. which uses the SAP Business Analytic Engine. without impacting existing applications or systems. SAP’s two strategic acquisitions of Sybase and BusinessObjects have strengthened the company’s product offering. SAP xApps for Mobile Business • Business Solutions SAP BusinessObjects BI platform SAP BusinessObjects GRC solutions SAP BusinessObjects EPM solutions Service and Asset Management • SAP solutions for SMBs SAP Business All-in-One SAP Business By Design SAP Business One SAP BusinessObjects portfolio SAP Crystal solutions Top five ERP suppliers by ERP software revenue 20 15 $bn 10 5 0 SAP Oracle Sage Infor Microsoft Source: 2008 financial reports . CRM. whereas today’s implementations can sometimes be completed in a matter of months. CRM. SAP has a coherent technology strategy. which will be trialled by 20 pilot customers in December 2010 at its Sapphire 2010 user conference. providing robust. mission-critical data. making technology available on-premise. These sometimes took years to set up and hone. says Noble. SAP’s applications use a middleware platform called Netweaver which unites and ‘orchestrates’ the software stack. Noble says it will be useful. scalable applications offering strong integration within the SAP product suite”. SAP’s BI and analytics strategy is enhancing core applications such as CRM and HR. general manager IS at RS Components. Germany. Duet.” SAP’s forthcoming High-Performance Analytic Appliance (HANA) technology. On top of this infrastructure. and on mobile devices. The SAP software suite is modular and uses service oriented architecture (SOA). In-memory. Phil Cook. • Specialisms: ERP.7bn. as it will be central to • 2009 full-year Non-GAAP revenues €10. including more than 800 UK-based staff. SAP xApps Composite Applications SAP xApp Analytics. and has grown to become Europe’s largest software firm. on-demand The acquisitions have enabled the supplier to pursue its threefold product delivery strategy. BI. say analysts. offering its technology on-premise. SAP PLM. SCM • Employees: 52. • History: founded in 1972 by five former IBM employees. and product life-cycle management (PLM). The benefit of HANA over other server technologies is that databases held in-memory can be accessed an order of magnitude faster than server/disc-based data. “The strategy is to ensure that businesses can make their best informed decisions by providing the analytics for core systems. on-demand and on-device. on-device. One beneficiary might be a supermarket that produces many different consumer products and needs real-time analytics for its stores and distribution operations. SAP ERP. This SOA approach has enabled SAP customers to implement ERP and other enterprise systems much faster than was previously possible in the days of SAP R/2 and R/3. dashboards and presentation tools. “There is recognition of the need to move from the pure efficiency drivers of the past to providing the intelligence that allows organisations to understand changing customer demand. “Current SAP BW [business warehouse] customers should evaluate it. says that SAP sells a “solid traditional product offering. for example.CW + Key facts SAP Beyond ERP SAP’s strategy is to build on its core SAP Business Suite. a family of integrated reporting. the former ERP platforms. in large retail organisations trying to analyse large amounts of transactional. But Hannah will really start to show its power when used to interrogate ERP transactions and for business online transactional processing (OLTP).

chief operating officer As COO. and the supply chain. For example. The supplier is also ramping up its ERP on-demand cloud offerings with SAP Business By Design. and promoted the Sybase Unwired Platform (SUP). with Oracle at £7. analysts have been scathing about the lateness of its arrival. chief financial officer Arrouays is responsible for the organisation’s finance and admin activities. customer relationships. Derek Prior is research director at Gartner and has been an SAP analyst since 1998. strategic account director As a director of the UKI executive board. SAP launched Version 2. Alan Bowling. a platform for developing mobile applications across a heterogeneous environment. “Rightly or wrongly. SAP installs. labour relations director Angelika Dammann COO Gerhard Oswald CTO Vishal Sikka SAP SAP’s BI and data warehousing strategy. “Also.” “Initial customer experiences with Business By Design sound very promising.5 of Business By Design in the UK in July. in May 2008. and execute growth plans. His primary focus is to drive SAP’s business strategy. SAP believes it can grow its user base by offering SAP on any mobile device. retaining and developing more than 800 employees. a Blackberry or other smart phone. Both Sybase and SAP are device-agnostic. Carolyn Horne.8bn and Sage at $2. As a result. She has more than 17 years’ experience in the software industry.000 subscribers signing up for its BI on demand. Sybase launched an analytics platform for Wall Street.CW + SAP executives Co-CEO officer Bill McDermott (right) Co-CEO Jim Hagemann Snabe CFO Werner Brandt Chief HR officer. Sybase made $1bn in revenue in 2007. At the heart of SAP’s rise to fame is the ability to provide ERP on a choice of open platforms in collaboration with an amazing ecosystem of partners. programme director European enterprise applications at IDC. “It’s quite rare that you find a SAP customer that has not been able to take that core SAP UK executives Tim Noble. Peter Heffner. which is a departure from its traditional on-premise IT model.4bn. SAP reported ERP software revenues of $17bn. it is now under the control of a single executive. UK and Ireland SAP User Group. and joined from BusinessObjects. says. SAP has fumbled its on-demand strategy. Heffner is responsible for ensuring consistent value management and service delivery to SAP’s largest and most strategic UK and Ireland customers. Doug Merritt. Here the pressure is on John Wookey [SAP executive VP for large enterprise on-demand. It features preconfigured processes for managing financials. but can still reap the cost and flexibility benefits for other areas of their business. whilst others are kept within the business. SAP has been late to the game with SaaS for larger enterprise. This is where the Sybase acquisition will prove its worth. Teri Ellison. says. projects. Another key technology that SAP is working on is on-device computing.” says Gartner research director Thomas Otter. “SAP really does lead the world in ERP and has done an admirable job in developing a depth of ERP functionality. whether it’s an iPad. Bo Lykkegaard. “The original design of Business By Design was flawed in terms of cost efficiency and the redesign delayed volume launch significantly. In the same year. Frederic Arrouays. maintains and upgrades the software. Guy Armstrong.” says Lykkegaard. Another Business By Design failure could damage SAP stock value and strategic agility very significantly.” he says. This is SAP’s software-on-demand business management suite designed for small and medium-sized businesses. Users potentially stand to benefit from SAP’s hybrid approach whereby organisations have some processes in the cloud. human resources director Ellison joined SAP in April 2008 as HR director for the UK and Ireland. It is putting enterprise data tools literally in the hands of the user. where he worked for 15 years. managing director. However. director of services Armstrong is responsible for services and support and joined SAP in 2005 from Gartner’s Benchmarking & Consulting Practices. Horne is responsible for providing the sales support infrastructure to drive sales and operational excellence. She is responsible for attracting. “This means that users don’t have to put their business-critical processes in the cloud if they feel it is too risky. chairman. as Sybase had great success both with databases and mobile technology. SAP UK & Ireland Noble joined the company in June 2009 before which he was senior VP and executive officer at Gartner. SAP has been criticised for being slow to bring its SaaS offering to the market. one of the four launch nations. procurement. but SAP must deliver a successful and simple-to-consume product during the current volume launch. but hopefully the result is a more robust and compelling offering. the Sybase IQ analytics server set a new Guinness World Record by powering the world’s largest data warehouse. but enables SAP to move with the times.” Core strengths One of SAP’s strengths is its ERP market leadership. Commentators say that. thus far. ERP competitors Infor and Microsoft Business Solutions made about $2bn each from ERP. human resources. In 2008. However. and SAP is claiming success with more than 200. and an ex-Oracle apps executive] to deliver specific SaaS apps such as expense management for the existing SAP customer base. Source: SAP .

in its Quest flavours and fragrances division. like all major technology suppliers. But together they created the perfect storm. Highprofile SAP users. Multinational organisations are keen to implement technology they can manage across multiple jurisdictions. SAP announced that it would move all of its customers to its more comprehensive but expensive Enterprise Support programme by the first of January 2009. announcing it would reintroduce its Standard Support licensing. SAP has had to deal with IT failures.” says Lykkegaard. However.” Then in October 2007. in a move seen as a coup for SAP users. a SAP-based system belonging to Birmingham City Council ran into difficulties.CW + SAP revenue breakdown by region Asia Pacific 13% SAP capability and gain some advantage from it. “Clearly over the last couple of years SAP through. SAP took longer than expected to complete its benchmarking process. SAP has also made itself unpopular with users with an unwanted change to the global support agreement.000 PCs. and delayed the move at the end of 2009. the market leader in BI. The problems centred on a project known as Q-Star: a SAP-based plan to optimise the supply chain that was due to save Quest £20m a year by 2004. if all new applications must integrate to the ERP system. which is often the transaction backbone of the company. although there have been some high-profile IT failures. And having bought BusinessObjects. Birmingham City Council.” he says. “The ERP leadership is important because most new applications must – in one way or another – tie in with the ERP system. Alan Bowling. As a result. including ICI. created a Americas 34% EMEA 53% Source: SAP SAP UK offices SAP (UK) Limited Clockhouse Place Bedfont Road Feltham Middlesex TW14 8HD Tel: +44 (0) 870 608 4000 Fax: +44 (0) 870 608 4050 SAP Ireland 1012 – 1014 Kingswood Avenue Citywest Business Campus Dublin 24 Ireland Tel: +353 1 467 4000 Fax: +353 1 467 4050 Support & Consulting Tel: +353 1 855 8034 SAP Galway SAP Ireland Parkmore Business Park East Galway Ireland Tel: +353 91 404 400 Fax: +353 91 404 410 SAP Research CEC Belfast TEIC Building University of Ulster Shore Road Newtownabbey BT37 0QB Phone +028 90 930084 Source: SAP . SAP has been successful in selling BI and analytics solutions into its own installed base. We had a series of small problems. SAP made a U-turn. Gilles Bouchard. HP experienced multiple IT problems when it attempted to centralise its disparate North American ERP systems onto one SAP ERP system in 2004. says. Computer Weekly reported that ICI was writing off a total £23m as a result of a failed SAP software implementation the previous year. Levi Strauss. Europe’s largest local authority was left with a backlog of more than 18. the move was met with opposition from many SAP customers. The project eventually cost HP $160m in order backlogs and lost revenue. because the integration headache will be less pronounced.000 unpaid invoices. he says. said. SAP’s other strengths are its access to senior leadership in those same companies. unwisely embarking on its Enterprise Support path. However. have all had major issues with their ERP systems that have adversely affected their businesses. Fortunately for customers. Besides the high-profile IT problems. US drug distributor FoxMeyer. IT failures No one seems in any doubt that SAP has highly effective technology that helps its customers to save money through running their operations more efficiently. At the time. Like its German counterparts BMW. and excellent account control: a strength it shares with IBM. more than five times the project’s estimated cost. then CIO of HP’s global operations. In 2008. SAP enjoys a reputation of having top quality products that just work. Then in January 2010. and fellow technology supplier HP. material issues and factory issues. In February 2003. “It was mostly capacity issues. SAP’s presence throughout the world gives the company an advantage over rivals. none of which individually would have been too much to handle. following the partial failure of the automatic installation of SAP software on about 5. Bosch and Audi. customers often consider the ERP supplier when buying new applications. So. SAP User Group UK and Ireland chairman.

all flavours of manufacturing. certainly evidenced through the user groups. significantly reducing the costs and risks associated with SAP implementations. for the sake of the customer. At the same time. the company’s quarterly customer satisfaction surveys have improved significantly throughout the course of this year. culminating in the latest poll which found that 92% of customers said they were “satisfied” with SAP. and therefore its customers. SAP continues to organise its sales and support operations by the industry. and pay an “affordable” monthly rental or perpetual licence. SAP says users can implement the software in as little as six to eight weeks. The industries in which SAP specialises include banking and insurance. Room for improvement However. Customers know what SAP does and its product. SAP launched Rapid Deployment Editions for specific applications such as CRM. and as part of the SAP User Group Executive Network. analysts feel it is still not doing enough to help custom- Other software 5% BI 18% ERP 45% Source: Gartner and SAP SAP 2010 revenue estimates by industry vertical Public services 11% Financial services 8% Process industries 19% Discrete industries 20% Service industries 24% Consumer industries 18% Source: Gartner and SAP . which just works and transforms our clients’ businesses.” “Many of us have felt that SAP was not as customer friendly as it appeared in the past but in recent months all that has changed with a far more proactive approach.” SAP is listening to user groups. User focus Many experts said that SAP is facing a customer perception issue. for example. These bundle up software. it is able to offer customers in specific sectors a tailored package of products and services with methodologies and processes that are suited to that industry. services and content. Noble claims that as a result of its renewed customer focus. we’ve been in dialogue with SAP about offering more choice in relation to support and demonstrating the increased value that Enterprise Support offers. transportation and logistics. SCM and business communications management in September 2010. Noble joined SAP in June 2009 from Gartner Group where he was senior vice president and executive officer of global sales. “As a user group. we also noted that many of our members were not happy moving to the more expensive and feature-rich Enterprise Support offering. This has meant organising its 1.100 UK consultants and field service personnel to communicate well with each other. As such. offering deep sector expertise which it has built up across the years. we highlighted that the new Enterprise Support offering could potentially offer a lot of value and that it contained much more than Standard Support. but what we need to do now is to put the customer at the forefront of what we do. His appointment illustrates the change in strategy. a highly customer-centric role. called the Netweaver Business Client. defence and security. “[Putting customers first has] been one of the main tenets of my strategy and focus. And it has produced a completely new. “Back in 2008. says Bowling. and media. telecoms. oil and gas. public sector and health care. despite SAP’s best efforts.CW + SAP 2010 revenue estimates by software market Other application software 5% CRM 16% SCM 11% SAP different atmosphere with its customers. taking on board their feedback and making changes to meet the needs of all SAP users. mining.” says Bowling. Other initiatives that include a complete redesign and simplification of the SAP CRM solution. or not focused on helping them get the best value from their SAP implementations. modernised user interface for its business applications. SAP aims to offer its enterprise customers single and consistent account management across the products and services they use. retail. But UK MD Tim Noble says that SAP is making a new and concerted effort to listen to its users and to work more closely with the user groups.” says Noble. At the same time the world has changed through some brutal economic conditions where the value that IT offers to the enterprise is now under a much higher level of scrutiny. And our product is incredibly strong. With the CRM Rapid Deployment. seeing the company as either not sufficiently engaged with them. However.

and SAP must develop a response to this. financials. SAP must make its business applications more collaborative in the spirit of web 2. who took on the HR portfolio in July 2010. the iPhone or iPad. etc. “Changes have been made for the right reason (use of SAP functionality via services outside of the SAP portfolio). says Prior. It needs to try harder at helping existing customers to unlock value from what they have already bought. But it needs to do a lot more. “The new management structure.CW ers. executive board member responsible for global service and support. was appointed COO.” he says. replacing Erwin Gunst. + Customer list SAP IDC’s Lykkegaard says. “In terms of ease of use. “Also. as well as what it considers to be a roadmap. financials The Royal SunAlliance – Business Intelligence The University of Newcastle Upon Tyne – Netweaver Time Out – SAP Business One University of Stirling – Human Resources University of Westminster – Human Resources Vision Express – Supply Chain Management Yorkshire Water – BI. Lithium CRM.” he says. Oracle Social CRM. “But collaborative applications are quickly entering the world of business starting in CRM with examples such as Salesforce. on YouTube. the speed of making changes to ERP and business applications. it runs”. in my view. financials. head of the global field organisation. Analysts have welcomed what they describe as a renewed and vibrant leadership team. “SAP must make its applications easier to implement. he would like to see an improved licensing model. easier to use. the supervisory board approved Angelika Dammann to the executive board.” says Lykkegaard. offers a lot of promise. SAP also needs to be more consistent in communicating its product roadmap. forum Chatter. In place of Apotheker. Netweaver The Electricity Supply Board – BI. “SAP is showing good promise with the twin CEOs. and customer care. but there are inconsistencies. Jim is a very product-orient- UK customers include: Amerada Hess – e-procurement Anglian Water – e-procurement B&Q – Financials Bank of Ireland – e-procurement. on Facebook. Netweaver middleware Finnforest – Supply Chain Management Glanbia – gain accurate business and customer view Hewlett-Packard – Supply Chain Management Homebase – Business Intelligence ICI – Financials Kent Police – SAP ERP for back office processes Kimberly-Clark – Supply Chain Management London Borough of Southwark – BI. says Bowling. Netweaver Microsoft – Supply Chain Management Miller Brands UK – ERP implementation Oxford University Press – BI. HR British American Tobacco integrated global IT & financials British Gas Hydrocarbon Resources – SCM British Waterways – Netweaver Cadburys Schweppes – Human Resources Diageo – BI. HR. collaboration is almost exclusively done in a consumer context: collaborative role playing games. To have that balance between product and sales is so important. SAP’s CEO Léo Apotheker resigned and subsequently became HP’s new CEO. In February 2010. Gartner’s Prior adds that SAP could improve its game in a number of areas.” Fighting back SAP has clearly been fighting back to win the hearts and minds of its users.” says Prior. The problem is the costs associated with implementation. head of business solutions and technology. Then in April 2010. In the same month. and visibility of product roadmaps has been a longstanding wish for many of our members. on Twitter. These include ease of use.0. “We would see this as the functionality that products will be enhanced with over the years. IDC believes that a huge potential exists for such apps. RS Components’ Cook says that as a SAP user. The mixed model leads to confusion and disengagement. Users have welcomed the change in executive leadership. The appointment of Noble is not the only change that SAP has made at the top of its organisation. replacing Mark Hurd who is now president at SAP-rival Oracle. while we want to get closer to SAP to ensure that we are able to influence their future product roadmap. For now. “Greater input into. in a remarkable game of inter-company musical chairs. CTO Vishal Sikka was appointed to the executive board. and Jim Hagemann Snabe. Over the last 12 months there has been a renewed focus from the company in listening to its customers and receiving greater input from them. SCM Rexam – Netweaver middleware Rolls Royce – Business Intelligence Royal & SunAlliance – compliance and streamlining data Royal Mail Group – Financials Ryanair – Financials The Body Shop – global retail business processes. e-procurement Source:SAP . Most people say that “when SAP is installed. The sheer ease of use does hold SAP in stark contrast and I believe that SAP is very jealous of their usability and is overhauling their interfaces. and Gerhard Oswald. and easier to maintain and change. At the end of the day you need great products and then you need to sell it well. I think Apple is showing them up with the ease of use of their technology. SAP appointed two co-CEOs: Bill McDermott. It is very much a two-way relationship as SAP wants to get closer to its users.” Prior adds. Customers have told me you get different messages from SAP in different countries. Bowling agrees. and more recently in HCM [human capital management] with Successfactors.

Consequently. but a big piece of it is CRM and BI analytics.” SAP faces growing competition from established SaaS providers like Salesforce. I have made a big play of improving the relationship with the user groups. “The UK continues to go from strength to strength. He also had a very strong customer care mentality. “The UK strategy is very in line with the corporate strategy of on-premise.921 26. But in October 2010. SAP can improve by continuing to work with our customers and famous partner ecosystem. HR. plus the orchestration that Netweaver brings. it may be worth staying the course with SAP. and have increased our relationship with Vodafone in the last quarter for example. and SAP also has a very strong sales person in McDermott.649 .CW + SAP ed person. We are making some strategic wins. which are beefing up their application on-demand services. The two new CEOs need to bring a new ethos to satisfy their customers that SAP cares about them. the traditional on-premise ERP market is shrinking as IT users are forced to implement IT on smaller budgets. If SAP can successfully extend ERP through mobile and cloud computing.” SAP continues to fight hard against its biggest rival Oracle. The deal will involve SAP and Siemens halving the airport’s 140 IT legacy systems and integrating them into one new SAP system. accounting and payroll. Big customer wins are hard to achieve. Headcount by region and function 52. But on the other hand. and the year on year growth is an example. reliable and open. It also means that Gatwick Airport will decouple itself from BAA’s IT system on the path to full independence. and ensuring consistency in account management. away from SAP. analysts and users agree that SAP’s software stack is strong. You could argue that Henning Kagermann [SAP CEO between 1998 and 2009] had all of those qualities. Gatwick Airport left Oracle and signed a multi-million pound IT contract with SAP and Siemens IT Solutions and Services. a coup for the German double act. as well as giants like Oracle and Microsoft. and even ERP and CRM. “This was a competitive ERP win against Oracle. and stay on top of customer care. Meanwhile. and allows enterprise systems to remain within the company’s control. on-device and on-demand.542 n EMEA n Americas n Asia/Pacific/Japan n Totals Source: SAP SAP Group (30 September) Professional and other services Software and related services General and administration Research and development Infrastructure Sales and marketing 11. including SCM.” says Noble.730 14. many SAP users will – and should – consider moving core back-office operations and business processes.

fall and rise again of SAP 1972: Five former IBM employees.7bn in 2008 to €10. 1990: SAP invests DM110m in R&D to further develop SAP R/2 and the new SAP R/3 system. The current ERP platform. SAP ERP.02bn. and Hewlett-Packard. forging a joint venture in Dresden with Siemens Nixdorf and Robotron. Its charismatic founder. and SAP expands into East Germany. facing Oracle in court again in 2010.224Mbytes. 2005: SAP acquires several smaller companies including retail providers Triversity and Khimetrics. and Bill McDermott and Jim Hagemann Snabe are named co-CEOs. Dietmar Hopp and Klaus Tschira. SAP introduces Netweaver SOA middleware and its modular. 2006: SAP and Microsoft introduce Duet.CW + 1992: SAP releases SAP R/3 to the general public.000th customer to implement SAP’s software for HR management. is launched. It generates nearly 50% of sales outside Germany and its global workforce grows to 3. SAP’s workforce also expands 40% to nearly 13. Approximately 96% of its customers use SAP software to manage business processes. enabling users to quickly and easily integrate Microsoft Office and SAP-supported business processes. 1994: IBM uses SAP R/3 to manage its global business processes. including Hasso Plattner. . open standards future. 2001: SAP adds corporate portals to its portfolio by taking over TopTier. Léo Apotheker becomes co-CEO. It increases its capital stock from DM5m to DM60m. 1979: SAP brings the completely redesigned ERP suite SAP R/2 to market. In May. 1995: Burger King becomes the 1. SAP raises support agreement costs with Enterprise Support contract. Kagermann leaves SAP and Léo Apotheker becomes CEO. 1988: SAP changes from being a private. providing a total memory capacity of 1. • SAP launches R/1 ERP system. and ports it to Sun. and sees revenues decline 8% from €11.8bn. The reunification of West and East Germany brings the nations’ economies and currencies together. enabling it to run on RISC platforms. SAP opens a branch office in Berlin. Coca-Cola implements SAP R/ initiative. SAP faces Oracle in court over software theft allegations of SAP Texas subsidiary (formerly TomorrowNow).157 by year end. Henning Kagermann is named co-CEO alongside cofounder Hasso Plattner. 2010: Apotheker leaves SAP. 2007: SAP Business By Design is released. 1999: SAP launches its mySAP. 1981: The growth of mainframes helps SAP to expand its customer base to 200 companies. 2009: SAP weathers downturn by cutting 3. and begins installing its system for customers outside of Germany. The founders spend most of their time in their customers’ datacentres. 1982: SAP generates DM24m in revenue and reaches the 100-employee milestone. takes over the management of this business area and is appointed to the SAP executive board in 2002. 81% of which comes from outside of Germany. With offices in 15 countries. 1997: The company’s revenues grow by 62% to DM6. 1998: Two founders. SAP begins developing RIVA – a billing and administration system for utility companies. limited-liability company into the publicly traded SAP AG. move to the SAP supervisory board. generating between DM30m and DM200m in revenues. SAP begins developing SAP R/3. The client-server system has a uniform GUI and dedicated relational databases. SAP The rise. The Switzerland operation now controls 12 international subsidiaries. Shai Agassi. 1989: SAP overhauls the user interface for SAP R/2. DEC. SAP establishes SAP Consulting to support new customers. 1973: SAP completes its first financial accounting system – RF and gains customers Rothändle and Knoll. 1977: SAP moves from Weinheim to Walldorf. They mainly develop the first SAP programmes at night and on weekends. 1987: IBM’s new generation of servers makes SAP’s software available to midsize customers. 2003: Plattner is elected chairman of the supervisory board.7bn in 2009. a joint development. to expand its international reach. Their aim is to develop application software for real-time data processing. SAP locates employees in a new office in Switzerland. Meanwhile. 2008: SAP completes buy-out of BI specialist BusinessObjects. the largest contract in SAP’s history.000 jobs across the business. 1996: SAP adds online features to SAP R/3.400 employees generate DM370m in revenue. 1993: SAP works with Microsoft to port SAP R/3 to Windows NT. giving employees access to a total of 64Mbytes of main memory for developing new software. SAP begins developing a Russian version of SAP R/2. adding e-commerce to the ERP suite. 1985: SAP’s datacentre boasts three IBM servers and one Siemens server. but subsequently abandons this. SAP’s development datacentre now contains servers from IBM. start SAP (Systemanalyse und Programmentwicklung). Siemens. 1991: SAP presents the first SAP R/3 applications at CeBIT in Hanover. achieving a high level of stability in 1981.000th customer. Dow Chemicals becomes SAP’s 1. SAP’s 1.000 employees. SAP buys Sybase for $5. SAP later admits some degree of wrongdoing.