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.
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.
- 20100208 Computer Weekly - Warwick Ashford " SAP admits enterprise support plan was a mistake"
- 20100208 DestinationCRM - Lauren McKay "After CEO Ouster, Plattner's Plea: "Please Trust SAP. We Have Not Forgotten You." "
- 20100208 SearchSAP.com/TechTarget - Courtney Bjorlin "SAP's new CEOs need to show vision, clear product roadmap to customers, observers say "
- 20100208 Bloomberg - Ragnhild Kjetland "SAP Upheaval Pits Plattner Against Ellison in Market-Share Spat"
- 20100208 ReadWriteCloud - Alex Williams "Will SAP CEO Shakeup Lead to a Unified Cloud Computing Strategy?"
- 20100208 Wall Street Journal - Vanessa Furhmans " SAP Chief Quits; Co-CEOs step in"
- 20100208 Associated Press - Matt Moore "Shares slip on CEO's ouster; questions"
- 20100208 Computerworld UK - Elizabeth Heichler and Mike Simons "SAP CEO Leaves"
- 20100208 LeMag IT - Reynald Fléchaux "SAP : Apotheker évincé, Plattner place la jeune garde sous surveillance"
- 20100208 Wall Street Journal: All things digital - John Paczkowski "SAP Board to CEO: Auf Wiedersehen, Sweetheart"
- 20100208 IDG News Service - Joab Jackson and Chris Kanaracus "SAP Hits Reset Button With CEO Change"
- 20100208 ComputerWeekly - Warwick Ashford "SAP moves to restore customer and employee trust"
- 20100208 Information Age - Pete Swabey "SAP CEO Steps Down"
- 20100207 Wall Street Journal - Archibald Preuschat "SAP Returns to Co-Ceo Leadership, Apotheker resigns"
- 20100207 Information Week - Doug Henschen "SAP CEO Apotheker Resigns; Co-CEO's Named"
- 20100207 Managing Automation - David Brossell "SAP CEO Resigns Suddenly"
- 20100207 ZDNet Irregular Enterprise - Dennis Howlett "SAP: Apotheker gone, Co-CEO's in place"
- 20091203 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus " No quick resolution likely for SAP KPI saga"
- 20091201 Computerworld UK - Mike Simons "SAP users wait for vital support announcement"
- 20091201 InformationWeek: Global CIO - Bob Evans "Global CIO: Will SAP Move To Tiered Maintenance Fees?"
- 20091201 Managing Automation - Jeff Moad "SAP postpones maintenance hike"
- 20091127 IDG News Service - Phil Sayer "SAP Enterprise Support KPI Project Leader and Sponsor Resign"
- 20090429 ComputerWorldUK - Mike Simons "SAP Maintenance Fee Reversal is Big Win for Customers"
- 20090429 The Enterprise System Spectator - Franck Scavo "SAP postpones its maintenance fee price hike"
- 20090403 ZD Net Enterprise Irregulars - Dennis Howlett "Zut alors! the French are revolting"
- 20090402 Computerworld UK -Peter Sayer "Update: SAP users get tough about Enterprise Support KPIs"
- 20090402 LeMagIT - David Castaneira "Tarifs de maintenance : les utilisateurs haussent le ton face à SAP"
- 20090401 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus "SAP: KPIs coming soon for Enterprise Support"
- 20081210 ZD Net Irregular Enterprise - Dennis Howlett " We Made A Mistake"
- 20081209 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus "SAP Makes Support Contract Concessions In Austria, Germany"
- 20081209 SearchSAP.com - Courtney Bjorlin "Many German and Austrian SAP users delay Enterprise Support contracts"
- 20081209 ZD Net Irregular Enterprise - Dennis Howlett "Breaking:SAP Maintenance Price Hike: Partial Victory"
- 20081127 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus "SAP User Group CEO Leaves"
- 20081126 Information Week - Mary Hayes Weier "SAP User Group Fires President"
- 20081125 ZD Net Irregular Enterprise - Dennis Howlett "Breaking: SAP User Group Fires CEO"
- 20081111 Computer Weekly - Warwick Ashford "SAP Enterprise Support dominates User Event"
- 20081110 ZDNet - Dennis Howlett "SAP's UK users don't get it - yet"
- 20081110 IDG News Services - Mike Simons "SAP users: we won't pay higher prices "
- 20081110 Computing - Phil Muncaster "SAP customers told to bargain hard"
- 20081109 Information Week - Mary Hayes Weier "SAP Outlines Updated Maintenance Fee Plan"
- 20081106 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus "SAP tweaks support offerings"
- 20081105 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus "Top SAP executive grilled on support hike at software conference"
- 20081029 SearchSAP.com - Editorial Team & Axel Angeli, "SAP: What Went Wrong? Blame Marketing, NetWeaver"
- 20081024 SearchSAP.com - Courtney Bjorlin, "SAP and Oracle vs Third Party Support"
- 20081021 CIO.com - Thomas Wailgum "7 Ways to Get More For Your Increased SAP Maintenance Fees"
- 20081020 CIO.com - Thomas Wailgum "Why SAP's ERP Maintenance Prices Should Be Going Down -- Not Up"
- 20081015 SearchSAP.com - Courtney Bjorlin "SAP Customers Should Push for Added Value in Enterprise Support, report says"
- 20081010 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus "Update: Forrester: Discontent persists over SAP maintenance hike"
- 20080923 ComputerWoche (ComputerWorld Germany) - Frank Niemann "AP macht in Sachen Wartung keine ZugestÃ¤ndnisse" Translated version courtesy of Babelfish
- 20080825 IDG News - Chris Kanaracus "SAP users seek proof of support plan's benefits"
- 20080821 Compuerworld UK - Mike Simons "SAP extends maintenance deal to thousands of R/3 customers"
- 20080820 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus "SAP, user group to shed light on enterprise support"
- 20080813 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus " SAP users: Support debate isn't over"
- 20080801 IT News.com - Rosalie Marshall "SAP refuses to budge on hikes in support costs"
- 20080731 Computing - Tom Young and Janie Davies, "Fury as SAP raises support costs"
- 20080730 Enterprise System Spectator - Frank Scavo "Mad As Hell: Backlash Brewing Against SAP"
- 200807289 Enteprise AntiMatter's Joshua Greenbaum, "Friendly Fire: SAP Flubs the Maintenance Business"
- 20080728 The Register - Chris Williams "SAP Defends Forced Price Hike"
- 20080728 MyCustomer.com - Stuart Lauchlan "UPDATED: SAP customers furious at 29% hike in support costs
- 20080728 Irregular Enterprise - Dennis Howlett "More dissent on SAP Maintenance Price Hike"
- 20080728 Information Age - Pete Swabey "SAP support costs to jump 30%, says user group"
- 20080728 IDG News Service - Chris Kanaracus "SAP, Oracle price hikes open door for license optimization"
- 20080728 CIO Magazine - Thomas Wailgum "As SAP Support Costs Spike, Users' Group Leader Preaches Collaboration -- Not Rebellion"
- 20080725 IT World - Mike Simons "SAP maintenance backlash grows in UK and Germany"
- 20080725 ITPRO - Nicole Kobie "UK SAP user group slams support pricing increase"
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