I had the opportunity to sit in on a press Q&A with SAP's executive team in Burlingame, Calif. this morning. One of the topics that came up was SAP's commitment to organic growth.
SAP has long said it will rely on organic growth rather than acquisitions. So what about recent purchases such as compliance vendor Virsa? According to SAP CEO Henning Kagermann and board members Shai Agassi and Leo Apotheker, there's little risk SAP is about to turn down the same road as Oracle.
This is not because SAP doesn’t have the option to do so, Kagermann said.
"The second-best strategy is acquisition. The best is organic growth," Kagermann said. "We believe organic growth is a better strategy. Our pipeline of creativity is so high, there’s no need to reach out to other sources of innovation.”
As the topic of vertical markets came up, Shai Agassi clarified SAP’s approach to acquisitions.
“When we do acquisitions, we do it from the edges of the solutions,” Agassi said, pointing out the difference in complexity between integration of retail and ERP cores. “It’s hard to buy half a heart.”
Hmm… Sounds like the SAP executive team is not impressed with Larry Ellison's two-year, $19 billion shopping spree. But then again, should they be considering that SAP has a product ready to install today, while Oracle has little more than PowerPoint slides?
“We ship the Suite and others talk about it!” Kagermann quipped in an obvious jab at the database giant.