SAP rejects user concerns over price rises

The software giant has said it has no plans to adjust pricing after UK users complained about the terms of their support contracts

SAP has rejected UK user concerns over imminent increases in the price of the company's support, saying it stands by the pricing that has been put in place.

The concerns were first expressed during the SAP user conference last month. Last week, the SAP UK & Ireland User Group put out a statement saying it was concerned about the changes SAP had introduced in its support arrangements, particularly as they concerned SMEs.

SAP had announced it was moving all customers, regardless of size, from a contract known as Standard Support to Enterprise Support.

According to the SAP UK & Ireland User Group, the changes could mean price increases of as much as 29.4 percent. In any case, according to a statement from the user group: "Pricing will increase from 17 percent of contract value to 22 percent of contract value, immediately applicable to new customers and introduced in a phased way for existing customers".

William Wohl, vice president of customer-service organisation and operations at SAP, said the company generated the new licensing model from users' input and requests.

"We take the input of the users group quite seriously," he told on Tuesday. "For example, the step programme where users can take up the options gradually between now and 2012 came out of interaction with our customers."

Asked if he could accept that price rises were causing some unhappiness among users, Wohl said: "I wouldn't agree with that". According to Wohl, SAP has no plans to change its strategy as a result of the adverse user reaction.

Wohl also pointed out that he had been unable to respond to last Friday as the company was in its quiet period pending the release of its quarterly accounts on Tuesday.