NEW YORK, Nov. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- SAP SE (NYSE: SAP) today kicks off its global SME Summit in New York, the fourth SME Summit hosted by SAP in the past three years. At the event, SAP will focus on the importance of small and midsize enterprises (SMEs) to its long-term strategy and goals. The majority of new SAP customers come from the SME segment. At the end of the third quarter of 2014, SAP has more than 263,000 customers, of which more than 80 percent, or 212,500, are SMEs. The SME opportunity is large, with the total addressable market expected to grow to US$244 billion by 2018*.
"I spent the earliest days of my career as a small business owner and understand first-hand how vital small companies are to economic growth," said Bill McDermott, CEO of SAP. "SAP is intensely committed to serving small and midsize businesses in every region of the world. Today we'll make a clear statement that technology and innovation are central to success for businesses of every size."
"Workforce of 2020 for SMEs" Panel Discussion
The SME Summit will begin with a roundtable of panelists discussing "What does the workforce in 2020 mean for next-generation, SME businesses today?" The panel will include external topic-matter experts, customers, entrepreneurs, millennials and SAP CEO Bill McDermott. Looking ahead to 2020, a radical set of changes are coming — in how people work, how leaders lead and how companies are structured and run.
According to a recent study by Oxford Economics, titled Workforce 2020 and sponsored by SAP, 51 percent of executives surveyed said millennials entering the workforce greatly impact workforce strategy. Millennials, who are set to make up 75 percent of the workforce by 2025, are the generation that believes everything should be available at their fingertips. They are driven by social commerce, user-generated experiences for purchase decisions and used to getting the information they need anytime, anywhere. Millennials represent an industry opportunity that is estimated at 90 percent of IT market growth over the next seven years. The roundtable panelists will examine ways for SMEs to prepare for the workforce of 2020. To be successful, SMEs must address the millennials — as employees, employers, peers and as consumers. To view the discussion live, join the webcast today at 9:30 a.m. EST.
SMEs Grow and Scale With SAP® Solutions
Following the roundtable discussion, Kevin Gilroy, senior vice president and general manager, Global SME Segment and Indirect Channels at SAP, will speak and shift the focus of the SME Summit to showcase how SAP and its partners help small businesses grow and scale.
"Together with over 11,900 partners worldwide, we deliver a comprehensive portfolio of SME solutions designed for the way our customers do business, providing a choice of solutions and a choice of deployment — on premise, in the cloud or a hybrid of both — and a choice of partners," said Gilroy. "SAP has a strong record of success in the SME segment, with the majority of our SME customers coming through partners. Projections indicate that the SME market is set to represent 52 percent of IT spending by 2015, with small enterprise being one of the largest segments. SMEs are the future, and SAP offers the right solutions to help them compete and succeed."
"SMEs are at an inflection point in how they approach using IT. Cloud, mobile, social and Big-Data technologies are fundamentally changing how we work and communicate with each other," said Chris Chute, vice president, SMB Cloud and Mobility Practice, IDC. "Forward-thinking SMEs understand that they will have to leverage a combination of these technologies to take their growth to the next level, and they can't go it alone. Companies like SAP, that have a strong heritage offering innovative business software, can drive greater competitive advantage and be the trusted advisor SMEs rely on to navigate these changes, grow and thrive."
SAP solutions for SMEs are offered in the areas of enterprise resource planning, analytics, database, mobility, cloud and business networks. These include the SAP Business One® application; the SAP® Business ByDesign® solution; the SAP Business All-in-One solution; Edge solutions; SAP Lumira® software; the Ariba® Network from Ariba, an SAP company; the SAP HANA® platform and cloud solutions. SAP is making it even easier for SMEs to leverage the benefits of its solutions through the following:
- Based on the success of the "buy now, pay later" offering introduced in early 2014, SAP plans to extend it into 2015, making it easier for SMEs to get the technology they need to compete with larger companies in their industry. This offer — available via SAP channel partners — provides SME customers zero-percent financing for up to 24 months for the purchase of any SAP product on the reseller price list.
- With the latest release of SAP HANA, service pack 9, the solution is now more accessible than ever to customers of all sizes, including SMEs. SAP HANA can now be run in production environments on more affordably priced hardware solutions that are significantly less than previous hardware offerings. Customers can take advantage of multi-tenancy capabilities and run multiple applications on the same server, for example, SAP HANA, the SAP Business Warehouse application, business intelligence solutions and SAP Business Suite software. They are provided the flexibility to move their on-premises based landscape to the cloud quickly and easily. For more information, see "Customers Innovate With SAP HANA."
- SMEs can also connect to Ariba Network free of charge. Used by more than 1.6 million companies in 190 countries to transact over US$600 billion in commerce on an annual basis, the Ariba Network is the world's largest, most global business-to-business trading community. Using the network, businesses of all sizes are able to connect with a global network of partners anywhere, at any time, from any application or device to buy, sell and manage their cash more efficiently and effectively. And as National Business Furniture, Charles Seafoods Supply, cSubs, David's Cookies, Mediafly and many other companies have found, they can deliver results in the form of new business, increased revenues, greater efficiencies, faster payments and access to financing to fuel innovation and growth.
A number of SAP SME customers are scheduled to participate in today's SME Summit, highlighting benefits they have gained from implementing SAP solutions, including Emprego Ligado, Fundacao Eugenio de Almeida, Golden Road Brewing, Lynch Fluid Controls Inc. and WL Plastics Corporation.
In addition, SAP recently announced the following news and developments related to its offerings for the SME segment, including: "SAP Business One, version for SAP HANA, Now Available on Amazon Web Services" and "National Business Furniture Boosts Business Through Ariba."
View this timeline of key updates for SMEs from SAP, made since November 2012, when its first SME Summit was held, to today. Join co-hosts Brian Moran and M-Prize winner Alanna Krause from Loomio and Enspiral during an online TweetChat today at 12:00 p.m. EST @SAP4SmallBiz. They will discuss social entrepreneurship, technology and millennials. Follow the overall SME Summit event on Twitter with the hashtag #SAPSMESUMMIT.
*Source: Gartner, "Forecast Analysis: Small-and-Midsize-Business External IT Spending, Worldwide, 2Q14 Update" by Mikako Kitagawa, Nhat Pham, Robert P. Anderson and Fred Ng, Nov. 17, 2014.
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