SAP Watch

Sep 5 2008   3:48PM GMT

Get ready to fall into Business Objects

JackDanahy Jack Danahy Profile: JackDanahy

News from SAP this summer centered around three topics — TomorrowNow’s closure, the maintenance fee increase and Business Objects.

Summer’s end leads to “conference season” and SAP seems to want to make sure this season belongs more to Business Objects.

Next week Business Objects CEO John Schwarz is headlining TechEd in Las Vegas.  He’s also the keynote speaker at ASUG’s Fall Focus conference in Dallas, along with Business Objects executive vice president Doug Merritt.

ASUG also announced this week it’s starting a user group devoted to Business Objects — the Global BusinessObjects Network. It’s hosting a Business Objects User Conference concurrently with ASUG’s Fall Focus in Dallas.

Amidst it all, it’s worth noting that Business Objects was a significant shift in the way SAP has done business to date. Acquiring Business Objects was a shift in SAP’s organic growth strategy and the results stand in sharp contrast to the failure of TomorrowNow.

Since the acquisition in October of 2007, it has released new products and further integrated the Business Objects line with SAP NetWeaver. In a conference held in Boston in August, Business Objects executive vice president Marge Breya told our sister site, “we’re exceeding our expectations on almost all measures.”

So does Business Objects’ success, and the attention SAP seems determined to draw upon it, signal a permanent change from SAP’s traditional approach of organic growth to growth by acquisition? Could more product-centered acquisitions — analysts agree the Visiprise acquisition was a win as well — be in the cards?

It’s obviously the approach championed by rival Oracle, which by the way, just announced another acquisition this week — ClearApp, a company that helps manage applications that combine two or more SOAs.

Courtney Bjorlin, News Editor 

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