Posts Tagged ‘Léo Apotheker’

News Analysis: SAP’s TomorrowNow Debacle Ends With Jury Award Of $1.3B To Oracle

The recently announced jury award of $1.3B to Oracle marks the end of a tumultuous public trial on intellectual property (IP) theft.  Fellow Constellation Research Board of Adviser, Dennis Howlett provided commentary on the award stating,

“The jury were given the choice of making an award based upon a fair market value license or lost profits. If the jury had looked at lost profits then it is difficult to conceive how they could have awarded anything approaching this amount. Even looking at fair market value, one wonders how they managed to compute such a figure given the number of customers TomorrowNow actually secured and the value of those contracts”

Should the record breaking award be upheld, the decision will serve as a lesson carefully studied by every high tech company on how and how not to handle IP theft cases.  Oracle has made a significant win and SAP acknowledged guilt throughout the case.

The Bottom Line For Customers And Buyers Of Enterprise Software
Though many pundits have commented on the impact to SAP and the overall high tech market, a few key points should be clarified for customers:

  • Penalty award significant in size but not detrimental to SAP. The award will not materially impact SAP’s ability to conduct business or invest in future products.  Insurance, rainy day funds, and other sources of revenue should cover this amount.  Given SAP’s 30%+ profit margins and its ability to generate revenues of $12 to $15B a year, this is a small price to pay for a huge mistake in judgment.  Customers should not be concerned.  SAP can also appeal.
  • Verdict does not impact the third party maintenance market. This trial focused on IP theft.  This trial does not address the issue of whether or not third party maintenance is or is not a right for customers.  This trial does not provide the ground rules on how third party maintenance could be delivered by a solution provider.   The trial does put some frameworks on ownership of support and maintenance IP.  A separate lawsuit by Oracle with RiminiStreet will address this issue of third party maintenance rights.
  • HP escapes with minimal damage. With a settlement out of the way, HP and its new CEO, Léo Apotheker,  can carry on with future plans without the albatross of a lawsuit.  In many ways, Leo avoided the limelight with a little luck and deftness.

Your POV.

Will the lawsuit impact your purchasing plans w/ SAP?  Do you care that Oracle won?  Do you feel the jury made the right decision?  Please post or send on to rwang0 at gmail dot com or r at softwareinsider dot org and we’ll keep your anonymity.

Related Resources And Links

20101123 ZDNet: Irregular Enterprise – Dennis Howlett “Jury Slams SAP With $1.3B In TomorrowNow Lawsuit”

20101123 Wall Street Journal – Cari Tuna “Jury Rules SAP Owes Oracle $1.3B”

20101123 SAP Global Communications – Bill Wohl ” SAP Statement on Jury Verdict in Oracle v. SAP”


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Copyright © 2010 R Wang and Insider Associates, LLC. All rights reserved.

News Analysis: New HP Leadership Indicates Interest In Enterprise Software

Two Seasoned Software Veterans Join Hewlett-Packard

On September 30th, 2010, Hewlett-Packard (HP) announced two significant changes in its leadership structure.  Former SAP CEO Léo Apotheker was named as CEO; and Kleiner Perkins partner and former Oracle COO, Ray Lane was named as non-executive Chairman.  These two appointments signal a seriousness to shake things up for the better at HP because:

  • Cloud computing and consolidation forces hardware companies such as HP to seek higher margins. Most hardware vendors face single digit margins in their core business.  To bolster margins, many vendors acquired system integration and BPO firms.  For example, HP purchased EDS and Dell acquired Perot Systems.  The next logical step requires the hardware vendors to get into software (see Figure 1).  Software margins hover from 10% to 50% depending on the market.  Expect a hardware vendor such as Cisco, Dell, or HP to acquire a cloud based company such as or Rackspace to move into the software business.  HP should go on the SaaS/Cloud offensive if they want to deliver rapid innovation to customers and break the cycle of dependence on packaged apps vendors such as Oracle and SAP.  HP can challenge Oracle through a complete cloud stack of SaaS, Paas, DaaS, and IaaS by investing in white spaces in the solution road map with verticals and other pivot points that have not been well served.  In addition, expect forms of SaaS BPO to emerge as clients seek best of breed SaaS and hybrid deployments.
  • Oracle’s acquisition of Sun follows the 1970′s IBM playbook and HP will compete with Oracle in the long run. Oracle’s going after the “golden age of computing”.  The impact — the tech industry reverts back to the beginning of a 40 year innovation cycle.  For example, mainframe time sharing manifests as SaaS/Cloud.  AS/400 and integrated computing evolves into appliances or cloud in a box.  Oracle’s strategy takes silicon to software and signals a need to deliver turnkey verticalized, integrated offerings.  Should HP continue to just serve in the commoditized infrastructure market, Oracle will beat HP in joint accounts for thought leadership and mind share.  Oracle’s going after the high end server market and the verticalized appliances market.  HP must have something to offer business leaders other than faster, better, cheaper boxes.  Software solutions are admission to the party.  HP could and should partner more closely with SAP in the short term to double up and battle Oracle.

Monday’s Musings: Why Users Must Preserve Their Third Party Maintenance Rights

Apps Users Seek Third Party Maintenance For Cost, Value, and Service

Updated surveys from inquiries, client conversations, and user group meetings show a 113.8% increase in interest in third party maintenance (3PM) services from Q3 2009 to Q1 2010 (see Figure 1).  Key factors stem from (see Figure 2.):

  • Continuing cost pressures. Budgets continue to be at flat or have been reduced.  Organizations must do more with less.  Add pressures to innovate, CIO’s must find fat without trimming bone.
  • Gaining minimal value in maintenance services. Most felt they were paying too much for too little.  An 8 point jump reemphasized the issue with a lack of tiered offerings.
  • Declining plans to upgrade. Worsening economic conditions from Q3 2009 to Q1 2010 led a 27 point increase in interest in 3PM.  Expect many respondents to change their point of view (POV) as economic conditions improve.
  • Expecting better service. Service continues to play a key factor in decisions to go to 3PM.  Over 60% of respondents had experienced poor levels of service.
  • Slowing pace of vendor innovation. Greater than half of respondents believe their vendor has been too slow to deliver new capabilities. These include SaaS deployment options or key functionality in areas such as strategic HCM and social CRM.
  • Disliking the vendor. About 1/3 of the survey respondents have bad experiences with their vendor.  Many times it comes from sales person or support rep experiences.
  • Delivering self support. Almost 30% of respondents already provide their own support.  These organizations have no need to pay maintenance when they are doing all the work.

Figure 1. Interest in 3PM grows 113.8% over 2 quarters.


Figure 2. Cost Pressures, Value, And Decision Not To Upgrade Drive Current Trends to 3PM


Limited Options Exist For Most Enterprise Apps Customers

Of the 101 respondents in Q1 2010 interested in 3PM, Oracle (88.1%) and SAP (76.2%) users expressed the greatest interest in seeking independent services (see Figure 3).  Over 80% of the users were from large companies greater than 1000 employees across the globe.  Most SAP users surveyed have mixed environments with Siebel, JD Edwards, and PeopleSoft joint installations.  Unfortunately, very few public options exist for sole SAP users (see Figure 4).  For example, SAP customers can only turn to Rimini Street.  Oracle customers on PeopleSoft, JD Edwards, and Siebel also have limited choices with Rimini Street, netCustomer, and Spinnaker among the options.  IBM, Infor, Lawson, Computer Associates, Epicor, Microsoft Dynamics, Oracle E-Business Suite and database customers have no options.  (Note: This data may not be completely statistically significant given the sample size of 240, but hopefully it provides some directional input.)

Figure 3. Oracle And SAP Users Drive Interest In 3PM


Figure 4. Very Few Public Options Exist For Customers


The Bottom Line For Users – Users And User Groups Must Band Together To Guarantee 3PM Rights. Don’t Take These For Granted!

Although the latest surveys show a 17 point increase in the belief that 3PM is a right, this right is under fire by big vendors such as Oracle who have taken legal actions against 3PM providers for improperly (i.e. TomorrowNow) and allegedly (i.e. Rimini Street) violating intellectual property rights.  If providers have violated such laws, Oracle rightfully should defend its positions and those providers be punished.  However, there’s a lot of money at stake.  For most vendors, maintenance represents 50% to 80% of their revenue stream.  Consequently, users and user groups have a responsibility to:

  • Demand that their contracts include provisions that protect their right to 3PM
  • Require vendors to work out rules on how 3PM providers can deliver services without violating software IP provisions
  • Seek anti-trust class action with the US DOJ (i.e. Christine A. Varney) and the EU Compeition (i.e. Joaquín Almunia) against software vendors who hinder 3PM providers from providing services

Users and user groups must vigorously defend their positions in contracts and legal action or lose this right.  Failure will result in a continued software maintenance monopoly.  Success will ensure market competition and renewed innovation.  Attention: OAUG, Quest, and SUGEN leadership your members need your help!

Figure 5.  A Growing Body Of Users Believe 3PM Is A Right


The Bottom Line For Vendors – Proactively Address The Issue Or Expect A Groundswell Of Activism

SaaS, subscription pricing, 3PM, and the economy provide a confluence of forces that will continue to attack maintenance revenue streams.  Many legal cases have been fought over this issue including IBM vs Amdahl and Geac vs Grace ConsultingSAP’s failed attempt to convince customers on the value of Enterprise Support led to a public relations disaster and a factor in the resignation of their CEO.  The result – many vendors considering price hikes held back.  In fact, some savvy software vendors retooled and restored the client -vendor relationship by:

  • Offering more entry points and tiers to support options. The three pillars of software maintenance and support policies still apply.  However, several vendors are now offering more tiers of support as lower entry points.  Two vendors have finalized plans to offer just the bare bones legal and regulatory updates.  Other vendors have made it easier to come back with maintenance amnesty plans.
  • Providing flexible maintenance policies. Vendors who change rigid policies have experienced success among customers.  Some Both Infor through Infor Flex and Micrsoft Dynamics allow like for like swap credits to migrate between existing products.
  • Renegotiating existing terms. Some vendors are helping clients meet the realities of the current market conditions. Big on the list is helping clients address shelf ware without repricing of contracts.  For clients who paid full maintenance on software that’s at least 4 years old, some vendors are offering to reduce up to 20% of the overall licenses not in use.  This leads to lower maintenance revenue but engenders good will among key clients.  Further, several vendors have allowed clients to apply credit towards another module as an alternative.
  • Delivering amnesty programs. Several vendors have allowed customers to return to maintenance programs after years of not paying.  Such programs play a key role in helping customers upgrade but should be used sparingly as customers may become accustomed to this practice.
  • Creating better peer forums to share information. Almost every vendor surveyed has a program to improve the online support capabilities.  Applying Social CRM use cases,  user generated content in peer forums tops the list of initiatives.  Other plans focus on sharing data on benchmarks, operational metrics, and best practices.
  • Assisting with vendor financing. Clients seek access to financing, especially many in the mid-market who’s credit lines have been zapped.  Microsoft has led the charge by providing 0% financing for its Microsoft Dynamics ERP and Microsoft Dynamics CRM Customers.  Other vendors such as IBM, Infor, Oracle, SAP, Sage also offer vendor led financing programs that include hardware, implementation, training, and other services.
  • Lowering cost of usage and ownership. Though tops on the list as a conceptual practice, most vendors will need to roll out such initiatives over the next 24 months.  A few notable exceptions include Agresso with its VITA architecture which allows customers to rapidly make business and UI changes, Microsoft Dynamics customers who report back significantly lowered implementation and training costs compared to most vendors, and Epicor customers who report significant productivity gains with Service Connect.  SaaS customers already experience such gains.

Your POV

Take the new and improved survey on 3rd party maintenance and let us know if you need help with your enterprise apps strategy by:

  • Conducting an ROI on 3rd party maintenance options
  • Identifying cost reduction opportunities
  • Renegotiating your software contracts
  • Improving innovation via SaaS and other deployment options

Please post or send on to rwang0 at gmail dot com or r at softwaresinsider dot org and we’ll keep your anonymity.

Related resources and links

20091008 Deal Architect – Vinnie Mirchandani “Third Party Maintenance Is Really 4 Decades Old”

20071120 News Analysis: Too Early to Call the Death of Third Party Maintenance

20090210 Tuesday’s Tip: Software Licensing and Pricing – Do Not Give Away Your Third Party Maintenance And Access Rights

20090709 Tuesday’s Tip: Do Not Bundle Your Support and Maintenance Contracts!

20090622 News Analysis: Infor Flex Reflects Proactive Maintenance Policy

20090516 News Analysis: Rimini Street Launches Third Party Maintenance for SAP

20090504 News Analysis: Oracle Waives Fees On Extended Support Offerings

20080909 Trends: What Customers Want From Maintenance And Support

20080215 Software Licensing and Pricing: Stop the Anti-Competitive Maintenance Fee Madness

20090428 News Analysis: SAP and SUGEN Make Progress on Enterprise Support

20090405 Monday’s Musings: Total Account Value, True Cost of Ownership, And Software Vendor Business Models

20090330 Monday’s Musings: It’s The Relationship, Stupid! (Part 2) – Stop Slashing The Quality Of Support And Maintenance

20090324 Tuesday’s Tips: Five Simple Steps To Reduce Your Software Maintenance Costs

20090223 Monday’s Musings: Five Programs Some Vendors Have Implemented To Help Clients In An Economic Recession

20081012 Monday’s Musings: 5 Steps to Restoring Trust in the Vendor – Customer Relationship

20100114 News Analysis: SAP Revives Two Tier Maintenance Options

20091012 Research Report: Customer Bill of Rights – Software-as-a Service

20090912 News Analysis: Siemens Cancels SAP Maintenance Contract

20090910 Tuesday’s Tip: Note To Self – Start Renegotiating Your Q4 Software Maintenance Contracts Now!

20090602 Tuesday’s Tip: Now’s The Time To Consider SaaS Software Escrows

Copyright © 2010 R Wang and Insider Associates, LLC. All rights reserved.

News Analysis: Hasso Brings More Changes to SAP’s Management Team

New Changes Hint At Hasso’s Priorities

In a not surprising update, SAP makes changes to Executive Board and management.  Here are the changes:

  • Gerhard Oswald becomes COO. Gerhard has experiences in support, consulting, education, custom development, and quality.Gerhard’s contract has been extended till December 31, 2011.

    Point of View (POV):  Gerhard’s been a long-timer at SAP with 30 years of experience.  He replaces Erwin Gunst who’s been out for almost a year with medical issues.  SAP needs a strong COO in place and Gerhard has the credibility and experience to execute.  Hasso’s putting a trusted lieutenant in charge.

  • John Schwarz resigns. The former BOBJ leader leaves.  He was responsible for SAP BusinessObjects, Ecosystem and Corp Dev.

    POV: After being passed up for the CEO job, it was obvious that John would be leaving.  Expect many of the BOBJ members in product management,  product marketing, and development to be reshuffled as their support will be shifted.  Those who didn’t fight hard for embedding T-Rex (inMem) and pushing out “Timeless Software” may be most impacted.

  • Peter Lorenz named as a corporate officer. Peter currently is the Executive Vice President for Small and Mid-size Enterprise (SME).  He reports to Jim Hagemann Snabe.

    POV: The corporate officer position serves as an extended board member role.  This hints at the importance of SME to SAP’s strategy.  SAP also needs to build bench strength in SME.

The Bottom Line – SAP’s Making Big Changes.

Hasso’s acting fast to make changes.  John Schwarz will be missed by many of the BOBJ team. Expect a ripple of changes as the management shake out finalizes over the next 8 to 12 weeks.   Look for new product road maps to arrive prior to Sapphire 2010.

Your POV

Are you an SAP customer?   How do you feel about the transition?  Would you like to learn more about:

  • Building a next gen SAP roadmap?
  • Improving your SAP apps strategy?
  • Augmenting SAP with SaaS?
  • Putting third party maintenance and optimization to work?

Please post or send on to rwang0 at gmail dot com or r at softwaresinsider dot org and we’ll keep your anonymity.

Related Links And Resources

Official SAP Press Release

Here’s a list of related reports.

20100114 News Analysis: SAP Revives Two-Tier Maintenance Options

20091211 Event Report: 2009 SAP Influencer Summit – SAP Must Put Strategy To Execution In Order To Prove Clarity Of Vision

20091125 Speaker Notes: Keynote – SAP UK & Ireland User Group Conference 2009

Here’s a list of related links of news during Léo’s tenure.  They will be added on an ongoing basis and updated as appropriate.

Copyright © 2010 R Wang and Insider Associates, LLC. All rights reserved.

News Analysis: SAP’s CEO Léo Apotheker Resigns

Apotheker’s Contract Not Renewed.  SAP Puts Snabe and McDermott In Co-Ceo Roles.


Rumors began circulating early this weekend that Léo Apotehker’s contract would not be renewed.  The highest level sources had confirmed this early in the morning and the afternoon press release provided confirmation of the details.  A few key facts:

  • SAP moves back to Co-CEO management structure. Bill McDermott, head of field organization and Jim Hagemann Snabe, head of product development become Co-CEO’s. Point of View

    (POV): For undisclosed reasons, Leo’s contract was not renewed. Both Bill and Jim have extensive experience at SAP and have been hard at work revitalizing the organization from both the sales and product sides.  Many observers may be surprised not to see former Business Objects CEO John Schwarz in the running.

  • Executive Board elevates role of products and technology. Vishal Sikka, chief technology officer (CTO) now appointed to the SAP Executive Board.

    POV: Vishal has the trust and ear of Hasso Plattner and Jim Snabe.  The net result may be more unified road maps, better prioritization of R&D assets, and less issues with product development.

The Bottom Line – Timing Is Everything, But SAP’s Inflection Point Is Good News For Customers

Though a seasoned executive with over 20 years with SAP, Leo was in the wrong place at the wrong time.  He was responsible for doing a bang up job in sales when Henning Kagermann (i.e. the former CEO) was around.   In fact, he made Henning look good despite the difficulties in launching mySAP ERP 2007, SAP ByD, and a host of other failed projects.  Unfortunately, he entered a down market while in charge of a sinking ship.  Low morale among the Walldorf engineering team, the issue with Enterprise Support and maintenance, and uncontrollable poor quarterly performance proved to be factors beyond his control.  Customers over the past 2 to 3 years began to wonder how to tap SAP’s innovation.  A clear need emerged for having more technologists at the helm.

Putting McDermott as Co-CEO makes sense.  He is an excellent sales guys but the issues is not sales.  It’s products.  Snabe and Vishal will need strong product vision to right SAP and point it in a forward direction.   Engineering and products need more attention to bring out trapped innovation at SAP.

Your POV

Are you an SAP customer?   How do you feel about the transition?  Would you like to learn more about:

  • Building a next gen SAP roadmap?
  • Improving your SAP apps strategy?
  • Augmenting SAP with SaaS?
  • Putting third party maintenance and optimization to work?

Please post or send on to rwang0 at gmail dot com or r at softwaresinsider dot org and we’ll keep your anonymity.

Related Links And Resources

Here’s a list of related reports.

20100114 News Analysis: SAP Revives Two-Tier Maintenance Options

20091211 Event Report: 2009 SAP Influencer Summit – SAP Must Put Strategy To Execution In Order To Prove Clarity Of Vision

20091125 Speaker Notes: Keynote – SAP UK & Ireland User Group Conference 2009

Here’s a list of related links of news during Léo’s tenure.  They will be added on an ongoing basis and updated as appropriate.

Copyright © 2010 R Wang and Insider Associates, LLC. All rights reserved.