SAP notes growing adoption among SMEs in Q1

Forcast put back despite adoption growth

Roughly 75 percent of SAP's overall customer base is made up of small and midsize enterprises, the software vendor announced at the start of its SAPPHIRE conference in Orlando on Monday.

The figure was boosted by a 28 percent rise in SME customers during the first quarter of this year, compared to the same period last year, SAP said.

The company now has more than 35,688 SME customers. Among those are 18,690 and 11,700 customers for its Business One and Business All-in-One ERP (enterprise resource planning) software, respectively; and 150 "customer engagements" of Business ByDesign, its new on-demand offering.

India showed the strongest rise in SME-related revenue on a country-by-country basis, with Brazil and Russia also performing well, SAP said.

SAP's partners are providing another theme for this year's SAPPHIRE conference, which concludes Wednesday. According to SAP, partners generate 85 percent of its SME customers.

Even as it cites growth among SMEs, SAP CEO Henning Kagermann said during a conference call last week that the company is scaling back its plans to roll out Business ByDesign to ensure that it will be able to turn a profit on the offering.

SAP had initially hoped to reach twin milestones of US$1 billion in revenue and 10,000 customers for Business ByDesign by 2010. Instead, those goals will take 12 to 18 months longer, SAP said.

Also on Monday, SAP said it is partnering with IBM and Hewlett-Packard on new Business All-in-One software-hardware packages.

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