SAP Outlines SMB Strategy at CeBIT

SAP has ratcheted up its campaign to increase its middle market customer base with the rollout of several new applications. At the CeBIT trade fair now taking place in Hannover, Germany, the company introduced an enhanced All-In-One application that offers some 80 micro verticals and is componentized even further for rapid redevelopment by partners and deployment by customers.

In addition, SAP announced plans to deliver updates to its Business One product line, designed for the smaller end of the SMB (small and mid-sized business) market — unlike All-In-One, which targets the upper mid-market.

Also en route is a second SaaS (Software as a Service) product that is expected to become available this year.

80 and Counting

The most immediate effect of SAP’s efforts to build up its downstream bona fides is the newly enhanced All-In-One product.

It upgraded All-in-One in January, adopting mySAP ERP 2005, its enterprise resource planning application, as the platform to allow for better implementation and integration of the CRM (customer relationship management) and SOA (service-oriented architecture) tools.

Now, SAP partners have introduced an initial 14 new solutions in the Americas, 15 new solutions in Asia Pacific, and 53 in Europe, Middle East and Africa by leveraging the application’s steadily advancing service-oriented architecture.

“The new SAP All-in-One solutions unleash the power of enterprise SOA in the world’s largest portfolio of micro-vertical industry solutions designed specifically for mid-size companies,” said Hans-Peter Klaey, president of SME at SAP. “Our partners are embracing the enablement programs and resources to introduce the next evolution of proven technology and industry best-practice business management tools from SAP.”

For example, Serkem, which has partnered with SAP for more than 10 years and is one of southern Germany’s top system integrators, has developed Serkem A1-LDL for Logistic Service Providers.

Another example is Absoft, a UK-based SAP partner specializing in the oil and gas industry, which recently introduced to market its Advantage Oil and Gas product.

Stuck in the Middle

The upgrades are good news for companies that feel lack of competition in this sector restricts their choices, Yankee Group analyst Sheryl Kingstone told CRM Buyer. “The All-In-One user base is too high-end for Microsoft Dynamics and too low-end for Oracle.”

NetSuite is just about the only vendor that offers a completely integrated suite at this market level and, in many ways, it has been ahead of SAP developmentally. It has been offering microvertical applications for a number of years, for example.

SAP has made a number of changes to the platform, Kingstone said, including the integration of business intelligence and analytics, an improved user interface, and the addition of microverticals.

“Next I would like to see SAP develop some prebuilt work flows,” she said.

Leave a Comment

Please sign in to post or reply to a comment. New users create a free account.

CRM Buyer Channels