WALLDORF, Germany, July 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- SAP AG (NYSE: SAP) today announced that all SAP customers will be transitioned to its recently released support offering, SAP(R) Enterprise Support, as of January 1, 2009, further demonstrating a dedication to providing solutions and support offerings that meet the evolving needs of customers. Launched earlier this year to new customers (see May 6, 2008 press release, titled "SAP Announces Next-Generation Support Offering"), SAP Enterprise Support is the next generation of support offerings that supports mission-critical business processes and heterogeneous software environments. In the six months since its release, the offering has experienced positive market adoption, with more than 350 customers signed on. As part of this transition, current customers will begin experiencing some of the added benefits of SAP Enterprise Support, beginning in July at no additional cost, with graduated pricing beginning in January.
WALLDORF, Germany, July 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — SAP AG (NYSE: SAP) today announced that all SAP customers will be transitioned to its recently released support offering, SAP(R) Enterprise Support, as of January 1, 2009, further demonstrating a dedication to providing solutions and support offerings that meet the evolving needs of customers. Launched earlier this year to new customers (see May 6, 2008 press release, titled "SAP Announces Next-Generation Support Offering"), SAP Enterprise Support is the next generation of support offerings that supports mission-critical business processes and heterogeneous software environments. In the six months since its release, the offering has experienced positive market adoption, with more than 350 customers signed on. As part of this transition, current customers will begin experiencing some of the added benefits of SAP Enterprise Support, beginning in July at no additional cost, with graduated pricing beginning in January.
Replacing previous support offerings, including SAP(R) Standard Support and SAP(R) Premium Support, SAP Enterprise Support provides SAP support through a 24/7 service-level agreement, continuous quality checks, support advisory and advanced support for implementing SAP(R) ERP enhancement packages and support packages. An enterprise edition of SAP(R) Solution Manager enables proactive risk reduction while helping to increase the business value of SAP solutions. SAP's leading operations methodology, Run SAP, helps customers beyond the go-live phase and focuses on application management, business process operations and administration. With SAP Enterprise Support, customers are provided an unrivaled comprehensive support offering at a cost that is below the average of maintenance fees found elsewhere.
"SAP Enterprise Support is the natural evolution of SAP's previous support offerings, and is an indication of ongoing trends in software support services," said Elaina Stergiades, senior research analyst, Software Support Services, IDC. "Enterprise customers are demanding a more robust support solution from their support providers and SAP is answering that call with SAP Enterprise Support. Integrating advanced tools with proactive support capabilities can free support staff to focus on high-value interactions with IT departments and end users. In addition, enterprises are looking for their support services providers to offer end-to-end capabilities for their environments. With SAP Enterprise Support, SAP will be able to provide a more complete software support solution for its customers."
SAP Enterprise Support Addresses Evolving Needs of Today's Global Companies
The ongoing growth of SAP's robust product offerings, the pervasiveness of business networks and mass adoption of service-oriented architecture (SOA) have challenged traditional support models. Announced formally at SAPPHIRE(R) 2008, SAP's annual customer conference, SAP Enterprise Support goes beyond bug fixes and support packages to provide companies with a holistic offering that helps to reduce the risk and maximize the value that customers receive from their IT investments. SAP Enterprise Support provides guidance and support related to end-to-end solution operations and identifies opportunities for increased efficiencies and business process improvements to optimize overall operations. The offering delivers support beyond a single element of the landscape in order to help customers operate solutions vital to their business, and addresses continuous innovation and investment protection so that customers can successfully deliver mission-critical business processes.
IT departments in companies of all sizes are under increased pressure to better meet and support the needs of the business. In particular, IT organizations are faced with the key challenge of minimizing system downtime and maintaining a stable core while implementing and managing differentiating innovation, from composite applications involving both SAP and non-SAP solutions. IT organizations that can efficiently manage a flexible infrastructure are better positioned to be a strategic partner to the business. With SAP Enterprise Support, IT organizations are poised to more easily address pressure to reduce operational costs by reducing time and money spent managing and operating their IT landscape.
Transition Timeline for Existing Customers
Demonstrating an ongoing commitment to relationships with customers and working with input from the Americas' SAP Users' Group (ASUG) and the German-speaking SAP User Group (DSAG) to solicit feedback, SAP has introduced a graduated timeline that meets the needs of customers making the transition to SAP Enterprise Support. SAP customers will begin experiencing some of the benefits of SAP Enterprise Support immediately at no additional cost. Beginning in January 2009, there will be a graduated pricing program that incrementally moves customers from their current pricing agreement for SAP Standard Support or SAP Premium Support to the SAP Enterprise Support pricing model of 22 percent of maintenance base by 2012 (for all solutions licensed prior to July 1, 2008, subject to contractual terms and conditions). For example, subject to specific contractual limitations, a typical customer paying 17 percent of maintenance base for SAP Standard Support in 2008 will pay a rate of 18.3 percent of maintenance base for SAP Enterprise Support in 2009.
"SAP consulted with multiple ASUG members for guidance in creating a transitional plan to SAP Enterprise Support that took into consideration organizations of all sizes and implementation stages — hence the graduated timeline," said Mike O'Dell, CIO of Pacific Coast Companies, Inc. and chairperson of the Americas' SAP Users' Group (ASUG). "At ASUG, we do whatever it takes for our members to succeed. And providing experience-driven education is a cornerstone of delivering on that promise. As customers embark upon the SAP Enterprise Support transition, we at ASUG are eager to play a prominent role in educating our members about the SAP Enterprise Support program and the potential impact it can have on the business."
For SAP customers still operating on SAP(R) R/3(R) 4.6c and 4.7, SAP has lengthened the period of extended maintenance currently offered as part of the company's 5-1-2 maintenance schedule (see July 20, 2004 press release, titled "SAP Extends Successful Maintenance Strategy"). This added period of one year makes the move to SAP Enterprise Support cost-neutral as customers plan their transition to SAP ERP from SAP R/3.
"As the market leader in business software solutions, SAP serves a customer base of the world's most innovative leading companies, and they need a support offering that is equally innovative," said Uwe Hommel, executive vice president, SAP Active Global Support, SAP AG. "SAP customers are embracing and taking advantage of the increased flexibility and agility of an SOA strategy, as well as complementing their SAP solution landscape with composite applications and third-party solutions. SAP Enterprise Support, unlike any other offering, addresses all of these elements, beyond traditional support, to enable companies to more rapidly and efficiently achieve the benefits of SOA — while keeping their core systems running smoothly. SAP remains committed first to customer success and SAP Enterprise Support is yet another innovative offering that helps our customers become best-run businesses."
About SAP(R) Enterprise Support
SAP Enterprise Support is SAP's new holistic support offering for SAP customers. Available at 22 percent of license fees, SAP Enterprise Support joins SAP(R) MaxAttention(TM), and SAP(R) Safeguarding in the company's array of support offerings. For more information please visit:
SAP is the world's leading provider of business software(*), offering applications and services that enable companies of all sizes and in more than 25 industries to become best-run businesses. With more than 47,800 customers (excludes customers from the acquisition of Business Objects) in over 120 countries, the company is listed on several exchanges, including the Frankfurt stock exchange and NYSE, under the symbol "SAP." (For more information, visit http://www.sap.com)
(*) SAP defines business software as comprising enterprise resource planning and related applications such as supply chain management, customer relationship management, product life-cycle management and supplier relationship management.
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