SAP Unveils ERP Offerings For SMBs

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SAP, long a superpower among enterprise software vendors, wants to make its presence felt in SMBs.

The ERP leader last week unveiled two SMB offerings. SAP Business One, based on technology SAP bought from TopManage, should be available domestically within 90 days and will be offered through partners, said Leo Apotheker, who last month was tapped as interim CEO of SAP America. SAP touts Business One's ease of use and fast rollouts. "This product is extremely simple to use but has all the functionality required for [SMBs," he said.

For the most "sophisticated" SMBs, SAP will also field mySAP All-in-One, which will be available for 11 U.S. vertical industries.

"Sales will probably be through the indirect channel; however, for multinational customers we will probably also use our direct channel. They will work together. Local solutions will be delivered by local partners," Apotheker said.

This represents a new frontier for SAP, which faces increasing competition in SMBs from partner Microsoft. The software giant is acquiring Danish ISV Navision and is expected to enter many European SMB markets against SAP, observers said.

But U.S. integrators are intrigued by SAP's moves. "Of course SAP would interest us because they're the largest ERP player in the market. They're about the only one who managed to succeed," said Dan Linstedt, CTO of Core Integration.

Pricing for the new offerings will be very competitive, Apotheker said, while declining to be specific.

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