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SAP Takes Big Strides in Small Business and Midmarket Segments

SAP Partner Strategy and Solution Portfolio is Successful in the Small Business and Midsize Company Segment

SAP announced growing adoption of its business software among small businesses and midsize companies across all regions, and in particular from  growing economies as Brazil, China, India and Russia. The company's portfolio of business software for small businesses and midsize companies -- comprised of SAP Business One, SAP Business ByDesign and SAP Business All-in-One -- continues to attract an increasing number of customers from the small and midsize market. Currently at about 75 percent of the company's overall customer base, the number of small and midsize enterprise (SME) customers grew by 28 percent in the first quarter of 2008 (year-over-year).

With a base of more than 35,688 SME customers -- including 11,700 SAP Business All-in-One customers, 18,690 SAP Business One customers and 150 customer engagements of SAP Business ByDesign in the markets where available -- as disclosed for the first quarter of 2008, SAP continues to achieve growth in the SME segment at a high rate. In the first quarter of 2008 alone, SAP gained more than 1,570 new SME customers worldwide, the equivalent of 26 new customers per working day. In particular, Brazil and the Commonwealth of Independent States, including the fast-growing Russia, gained new customers at an impressive rate. India, the fastest-growing country for SAP overall, reported the highest growth rate in SME software revenues for a single country.

SAP SME Partner Ecosystem Expanding
In its successful multi-channel, go-to-market strategy, SAP and partners are equally engaged to help ensure that SME customers benefit from SAP solutions. Approximately 85 percent of the total number of SME customers is generated through partners alone. While SAP continuously develops its distinct solution portfolio for SMEs, SAP partners create added value through their services, local business know-how and, vertical and microvertical expertise. With a solid base of qualified SME partners, the company is well-positioned to meet the growing global market demand in the SME segment. SAP continues to invest in expanding and further enabling its SME partner ecosystem to help its partners' businesses thrive. As an example of how the company empowers channel partners to grow, SAP India has conducted more than 500 SME roadshows together with more than 200 of its partners across the country to help make SAP solutions more accessible to the vast pool of Indian SMEs.

"Our growing customer and partner numbers clearly show that we have the right strategy of supporting small businesses and midsize companies around the world, regardless of their business models or industry, in their quest for success and growth," said Hans-Peter Klaey, president, SME, SAP AG. "We will continue to foster our ecosystem to the benefit of our growing customer base. Together with our partners we offer not only a broad but a deep portfolio of solutions and services that truly makes a difference in our customers' everyday business actions."

SAP Offerings Deliver Instant and Long-Term Value to SMEs
With all its solutions offering evolutionary innovation and flexible growth, SAP actively addresses the heterogeneous requirements of companies of all types and sizes. This becomes possible through the unique design of standardized but highly adaptable business processes based on one single technology platform. SAP has been observant in recognizing the specific needs of SMEs, where proven best practices, preconfigured generic and industry-specific -- even microvertical -- business processes together with packaged service offerings help address the major IT challenges for SMEs: low total cost of ownership (TCO), fast time to value and long-term investment protection.

SAP solutions for small businesses and midsize companies include SAP Business One, a single integrated, application for successfully managing small businesses; SAP Business ByDesign, the software industry's most complete, integrated and adaptable on-demand solution for midsize companies, available in a controlled ramp-up process to prospects in six focus countries; and SAP Business All-in-One, a customizable and extensible solution for midsize companies with deep built-in industry best practices. In further lowering TCO for its customers, SAP Business All-in-One solutions are now also available via the announced fast-start program in an all-inclusive offering comprised of hardware, database and operating system from selected partners in various markets. Moreover, customers in the midmarket today are able to take advantage of the versatile enterprise services approach to IT that allows for quicker, more flexible adaptation of existing processes, as well as the composition of new and management of all business processes. Based on the most recent versions of SAP ERP and SAP NetWeaver, both built in accordance with an enterprise service-oriented architecture (enterprise SOA), SAP Business All-in-One solutions offer a compelling scope of services-enabled business processes. With SAP Business ByDesign, midmarket customers in selected markets can already benefit from an on-demand solution that is completely based on enterprise SOA and deliver core end-to-end processes in the shape of enterprise services. Thus, midmarket companies that select SAP solutions can choose to adopt a true SOA-based business process platform, while making best use of enterprise services today.

SAP Proves Best Fit for Heterogeneous Needs of SMEs Worldwide
With a common desire to globalize operations, drive competitiveness and boost growth, SMEs in growing economies require a wide range of solutions from their software provider, all of which are addressed by SAP. With the growth of the Chinese economy, Chinese SMEs are primarily turning to SAP for solutions that enable them to effectively run and manage businesses, and flexibly transform and adapt the complete value chain in accordance with fast- changing business models. Russian SMEs cite the fast time-to-value and the benefits of creating end-to-end processes when internationalizing their businesses. Midsize enterprises in India are experiencing dramatic growth. Managing growth and transforming themselves to the next level are key strategic priorities for these enterprises, thus they are adopting scaleable and flexible IT platforms from SAP. While small Indian enterprises cite automating business processes and enhancing effectiveness as top priorities, Brazilian SMEs rely on SAP software mainly for achieving operational excellence and establishing integrated business processes that allow them to manage growth.

"SAP Business All-in-One integrates our different internal and external enterprise systems, and supports all operational business activities," said Wang Yun, assistant to the general manager, Chongqing Yinhe Instruments Co. Ltd. "With the leading functionality on the basis of single coding, this integrated business solution ensures that we keep up with the current market information, make correct decisions and implement them effectively. With SAP, we have now started our second giant leap after the reformation of the economic system in China."

Adding to SAP's success in the SME market segment are companies in countries that are well-developed economically but less so in terms of IT. In countries such as Hungary and South Africa, companies increasingly benefit from globalized business transactions and enhanced business insight by seizing the power of SAP solutions.

Such companies include MASC Solutions, a solution provider for security and fire protection that was serviced by SAP channel partner Bluekey in South Africa. MASC Solutions managed to gain complete control over its business with SAP Business One after a very short time and thus set a solid basis for growth. The ABO Group, a Hungarian holding comprised of businesses in grain and fodder production with subsidiaries throughout Central and Eastern Europe, recently decided to deploy SAP partner Hostlogic's SAP Business All-in-One solution for food processing. According to the company, the most important benefit was a boost in efficiency when member companies of the holding were able to work within a unified business process structure. Further advantages included streamlined administration, precise customer segmentation and organization of sales, management of materials and stocks that have noticeably increased productivity, and competitiveness of the entire corporation.

More Stories By SAP News Desk

SAP News Desk trawls the world's news information sources and brings you timely updates on the world's leading provider of enterprise resource planning (ERP) and its various software product lines used to integrate back-office functions such as distribution, accounting, human resources, and manufacturing.

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