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SAP eyes SMEs in Southeast Asia

SAP debuts the Grow with SAP programme in Southeast Asia to drive adoption of S/4 Hana Cloud among small and medium-sized enterprises

SAP is eyeing small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Southeast Asia with a new programme that provides smaller firms with access to the public cloud edition of S/4 Hana Cloud, its cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) suite of business applications.

Dubbed Grow with SAP, the programme also includes access to the SAP Business Technology Platform that SMEs can use to build enterprise applications, automate processes and design business sites without writing code.

Speaking at the launch of the programme in Phuket, Thailand, Verena Siow, president and managing director of SAP Southeast Asia, noted the growing uptake and interest in SAP cloud offerings among SMES during the pandemic. About eight in 10 SAP customers in the region are SMEs.

“Digital has become the forefront for companies to survive and continue running their operations,” she said. “We see huge interest from SMEs because they can’t rely on Excel and custom apps anymore. That’s why we launched Grow with SAP to help them run faster, be more agile and deploy cloud ERP more easily.”

The Grow with SAP programme will be entirely driven by SAP partners such as Thailand’s I AM Consulting and Delaware, a multinational technology service provider with operations in Southeast Asia.

Vipin Chandran, SAP’s chief partner officer in Southeast Asia, said the company relies on partners to expand into markets such as Cambodia, Myanmar, Nepal and Bhutan, as well as regional cities like Surabaya in Indonesia and Danang in Vietnam.

Through their implementation expertise, Chandran said partners also play a very critical role in helping SAP customers realise the value of their SAP investments quickly, by shortening deployment time, especially for SMEs that may not have in-house IT teams.

Read more about cloud ERP in APAC

  • More than half of enterprises are expected to use industry cloud platforms that combine cloud-based infrastructure, platform and application services to accelerate their business by 2027.
  • Organisations in Asia-Pacific are looking to renew their ERP systems as they emerge from the throes of the pandemic.
  • Mid-market ERP software provider Unit4 is ramping up its investments in APAC, starting a new R&D centre in Jakarta.
  • Vallen Asia’s cloud ERP system has enabled it to scale its operations across the region and made its supply chain operations more resilient amid the pandemic.

Siow said with Grow with SAP, the German software giant is targeting new customers with greenfield implementations of S/4 Hana Cloud. Most customers are expected to start with financials to grow and scale their business before implementing additional capabilities such as supply chain management, she added.

Christophe Derdeyn, partner and director of Delaware’s Singapore and international business, said: “The biggest advantage of S/4 Hana public cloud is that you can start with a limited scope at a very fast pace of six to eight weeks, so the entry point is quite easy.

“And from an internal operations perspective, you will need an implementation provider like us, but once you go live in the initial phase, you don’t need to have a big IT team,” he said. “Over time, you can adopt new functionalities and evolve the platform as you grow as an organisation.”

Singapore’s Temasek Public Resilience Infectious Disease Emergency (T-Pride) fund is one of the earliest organisations to sign up for the SAP programme.

“By moving to cloud and leveraging Grow with SAP as our digital core, we are able to enhance the way we operate with greater governance and visibility, while continuing to deliver on our mission,” said Judy Hoie, CEO of T-Pride, a fund established during the Covid-19 pandemic to help vulnerable groups and families.

“Having an integrated solution will ensure we can manage future deployments effectively and processes/governance are aligned,” she added. “With a unifying and data-driven approach to process analysis and improved decision-making, we continue to meet the evolving needs of our communities and transform lives for a more inclusive and resilient world.”

During the first quarter of 2023, SAP grew its cloud revenue in Asia-Pacific and Japan to €414m ($458m), an increase of 23% over the same period in 2022. Globally, SAP’s cloud revenue was up 24%, with S/4 Hana cloud revenue up 77%.

Next Steps

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