1. SAP eyes big opportunity to help customers complete digital journey’ here’s how

SAP eyes big opportunity to help customers complete digital journey’ here’s how

The German enterprise software maker sees a big opportunity to help customers complete their digital journey, not just to innovate, but to become scaled digital businesses

By: | Published: June 5, 2017 4:16 AM
SAP, SAP news, SAP latest news, indian smes, small and medium enterprises india, sme india, sap ceo BILL MCDERMOTT Technology allows governments and citizens to communicate faster and more effectively, says Bill McDermott, CEO, SAP

Data is most valuable when it’s in the hands of business users. Challenged to stay ahead of the massive changes that are disrupting the marketplace, businesses are turning the vast amounts of data distributed across their enterprise into insights and outcomes to drive material return on investment (ROI). Bengaluru-based Teknoleum Solutions is one such firm that highlights the strategic utility of data to gain real-time insights and boost efficiencies in an increasingly data-driven oil and gas sector. It has developed an innovative cloud-based Internet of Things solution for connected solar farms, called PV2, which leverages the power of SAP HANA to increase solar photovoltaic plant output and decrease operations and maintenance costs.

“We are a team of SAP product development experts. Our solution is an IoT app for photo voltaic plant management that monitors solar plant performance patterns to estimate soiling losses,” said Shashidhar Peddi, delivery head, Teknoleum Solutions.

Hero Future Energies (HFE), a fast-growing independent power producer, too has adopted SAP HANA to bring about digital transformation through end-to-end business process integration and provide operational, financial efficiencies across 25 project sites in India. A part of the Hero Group and with presence in nearly 10 states across India, HFE is focused on futuristic and clean energy through successful implementation of wind, solar and rooftop solar projects in the country.

Deployable on premise or in the cloud, SAP HANA is an in-memory data platform developed and marketed by German enterprise software maker SAP. It processes high volumes of operational and transactional data in real-time. “It lets you accelerate business processes, deliver more business intelligence, and simplify your IT environment,” said Paul Marriott, chief operating officer, SAP Asia Pacific Japan. “It’s not just large and mid-sized Indian enterprises, there are hundreds of start-ups building and running applications on SAP HANA and they are trying to create disruptive business solutions.”

Rethinking data

The digital economy is significantly redefining how companies manage their business. “Research shows that data-driven decisions are at the forefront of digital leaders’ minds. It’s not an option to adopt a data-driven culture; it’s the essential ingredient to stay alive in today’s hyper-connected market,” said Mala Anand, president of analytics at SAP. Speaking at SAP’s annual Sapphire Now conference in Orlando, she said, “Companies need an open architecture that can rapidly turn valuable data assets from transactional systems into transformational knowledge in real time.” According to her, that is why it is introducing SAP Leonardo, which applies the force of digital technologies to the power of imagination to reinvent new business models, and enable business leaders to envision their future.

Company officials said SAP Leonardo provides businesses with a set of tools that allow them to create new type of applications and embed them to the business applications that are currently running, whether they are on SAP S/4HANA or even an older version of SAP. The company also informed it will open a SAP Leonardo design centre in Bengaluru in the next three months, where it will showcase digital innovation and provide learning and enablement resources for customers, partners and employees.

There’s competition in the era of digital business too. As SAP CEO Bill McDermott remarked in his address: “There are tonnes of buzzwords vying for people’s attention, but even experts have a hard time making sense of exactly what they mean. Blockchain? Artificial intelligence? Machine learning? From SAP’s perspective, it’s all about intelligently connecting things, people and businesses—with speed as the key to digital business success.”

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India in spotlight

McDermott, who is also member of the executive board of SAP, told FE: “Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made the adoption of digital technology a priority—truly a bold and commendable move. Technology allows governments and citizens to communicate faster and more effectively.”

Adaire-Fox Martin, who leads SAP’s business in EMEA and Greater China, remarked: “The steady progress towards digitisation with some of the government programmes like Digital India and cashless economy is generating unprecedented amount of data daily. SAP is the smart companion to navigate the data jungle. For Indian businesses, we want to take away all the complexity and give them all the benefits of digital.”

The introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST), slated from July 1, will bring in a new regime of tax compliance and SAP is at the forefront of helping businesses towards this. It has set up 30 GST solution centres in 13 cities to fast-track GST readiness of medium, small and micro enterprises. These centres will engage with MSMEs and showcase SAP’s solution portfolio for GST. Other initiatives from SAP include the launch of ‘GST in a box” solution, an online resource centre. GST software implementation will lead to 3-5 billion invoice uploads every month. SAP estimates that at least 40% of these will pass through a SAP-enabled system.

The data journey has just begun.

The writer was in Orlando at the invitation of SAP

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