Interview with SAP co-CEO Jim Hagemann Snabe

SAP is preparing for the roll out of its Business byDesign cloud service bouyed by a reasonably good second quarter in the US...

SAP reported a good Q2 yesterday. Dennis Howlett reports:

They are looking healthier than this time last year but it was something of a mixed bags with declines in professional services margin offset by improvements in software licensing and support margins combined with a continuing emphasis on cost control, despite an expansion in sales and marketing.

...Analysts will be pleased to see a return to growth in the Americas but whether that is sustainable or not depends on many factors including macro-economic confidence. The offsetting fall in EMEA will be a concern, especially given the relative importance of SAP’s German home market.

I spoke with Jim Hagemann Snabe, co-CEO of SAP. Here are some notes from our conversation:

- We benefited from some tail wind from currency effect but revenues were strong.

- We did more than 10,600 deals in the quarter. It shows that we have become a strategic choice for many companies.

- This Friday we will make our cloud offering Business byDesign available. We delayed it a year so we could make sure we got things right. We want to redefine the category and we now have a category killer. Our cloud offering will be ahead of many legacy clouds.

- At the moment, the cloud computing market is very narrow in its scope. We hope to change that over time.

- Mobile data is very important and that is something that Sybase will offer. We have a great iPad application (see video below.)

- We want to be the best supplier of hybrid solutions. Not everybody needs cloud computing.

- There is a massive data explosion happening. Data is doubling every 18 months. Companies want to run everything in memory, they want their analytics to run in memory. This will become the next generation cloud. Speed will become very important.

- Business byDesign will offer the best TCO (total cost of ownership) savings. But it will be a while before it makes a significant contribution to earnings. We want to make sure we have the best offering, we want to get reach before getting rich. We want great references so that we won't have to push the service but benefit from "pull."

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