Earlier today, SAP released its Q2 2007 earnings results. Usually we leave coverage of that type of thing to the financial publications, but when we saw that some were expecting SAP’s profits to drop for the first time in three years, we figured we’d have a listen to SAP’s senior management roundtable.
As it turns out, SAP came out looking pretty good. Profits in Q2 were 449 million euros, compared with 415 million euros in Q2 of 2006. License sales checked in at 715 million euros, above the 676 million euro average forecast. For those interested, there are many more financial statistics in SAP’s press release.
Henning Kagermann also got into A1S a little more, saying we can look forward to learning the product’s real, market name, example customers and more details about the release schedule in September.
An interesting question that came up was if SAP expected its enterprise customers to see the on-demand A1S and say, “hey, we want that too!” Kagermann’s response was as vague as you would expect, but did give some insight:
Clearly we will leverage some of the innovations [of A1S] for large enterprise clients, as we leverage our experience from large enterprise clients in the set-up of the system because it’s a “suite in a box”… in our case, innovation goes top down and bottom up. So, you will see over time more and more how we are doing it, you will see more clarity at Sapphire. And, believe me, our large clients are pretty happy with the setup.
That comment seems to keep the door open for SAP ERP on-demand beyond the midmarket sometime in the future, right?
Robert DeSisto, a vice president at Gartner Inc., agreed that larger enterprises would be watching A1S with interest, and agreed with SAP that the original recipe A1S is not designed, or suited, for them.
“People in the higher end will want the usability and concepts that are used in A1S, but they will quickly see that this tool won’t work for them,” he said.
While the press conference lacked any of the thinly veiled shots at competitors that sometimes make these calls interesting, there was one question that generated a good quip from Kagermann:
Question: In what ways are you missing Shai Agassi?
Kagermann: “I’m missing him in my heart… but not in my business.”