SAP Accelerates Innovation in the World’s Largest Business Network

SAP AG (NYSE: SAP) today unveiled plans to infuse SAP innovations into the world's most powerful business network. Through the recent combination of SAP and Ariba, an SAP company, close to 1 million companies are now connected to the Ariba Network — more than any other trading network. As a result, enterprises are collaborating in new ways that help drive unprecedented levels of productivity in their sales, procurement, invoice and payment processes. The introduction of SAP innovations in social, mobile, cloud and the in-memory technology of the SAP HANA® platform will drive global business-to-business collaboration and even higher levels of efficiency and insights through the business network. The announcement was made at SAPPHIRE® NOW + SAP® TechEd, being held as a co-located event in Madrid from November 13-16.

SAP today also announced several rapid-deployment solutions, to make it fast and simple for customer running SAP® Business Suite software to rapidly integrate with the Ariba Network and reap the benefits that it provides:

  • Product catalog integration between SAP Business Suite, including logistics materials management and supplier relationship management, and the Ariba Network, based on SAP NetWeaver® Process Orchestration software
  • Purchase order and invoice automation for automated exchange of documents in the procure-to-pay and order-to-cash processes

"Online social networks tools have transformed our personal relationships by connecting us to people and information in new ways," said SAP Co-CEO Jim Hagemann Snabe. "We are enabling businesses of all sizes to do the same. With 1 million companies connected, SAP and Ariba have created the largest business network in the world. Together we will deliver game-changing gains in productivity, collaboration and agility across the entire value chain of suppliers, partners and customers."

Removing Business Boundaries
Through the acquisition of Ariba, SAP has created a new operating model for business, which effectively eliminates the boundaries between individual companies. Enterprises can now work in a fully-networked environment to more efficiently discover, connect and collaborate with their customers, suppliers and other partners. In addition, new processes and community-based insights are enabled that can drive unprecedented levels of productivity across more geographies and lines of business. Using the Ariba Network, companies today can:

  • Receive active leads from a global community of qualified buyers rather than simply tracking them
  • Manage orders and statuses in real time rather than chasing paper
  • Accelerate payments for goods and services and optimize cash by making early payments
  • Gain new community-based intelligence and insights to make more informed decisions

Buyers Benefit: Finding the Right Fit, Faster
PPG, a leading coatings and specialty products company, is a prime example of a large enterprise currently using Ariba Discovery, the premier service for matching buyers and sellers globally delivered via the Ariba Network. The US$15 billion company is able to quickly expand its pool of sellers beyond local boundaries, gain unique qualifying information from network-based transactional history and member-generated performance ratings and increase competition in their sourcing events worldwide.

"With other channels, it used to take us considerable time to assess the quality of sellers – and we weren't even sure of their quality," said Dan Wolfred, senior manager, Process & Technology, PPG Industries. "Ariba Discovery efficiently manages the new seller identification process and we use it on a global basis because of its extensive reach. It saves our buyers significant time finding new sellers."

Suppliers Benefit: Lighting-Fast Time to Cash, Higher Productivity
In addition to getting access to new business opportunities with the world's largest community of Global 2000 buying organizations, sellers gain new levels of process efficiency and transparency. Ariba Network user have reported 50 percent faster transaction processing cycles, 60 percent improvements in order accuracy, double-digit increases in revenues with existing and new customers on the network and 20 percent faster payment. The Ariba Network also offers new types of collaboration and insights only available in a networked model.

For example, using the dynamic discounting tools delivered on the network, buyers can accelerate payments for approved invoices to key suppliers in return for discounts, earning an immediate return on their cash. Sellers can gain increased visibility into future cash flows, certainty in payment timing and the ability to use cash sooner.

  • Chicago-based Mediafly is a trusted provider for the Fortune 1000, bridging the gap between compelling sales and marketing content and the wide range of mobile and smart devices. The company took advantage of the discounting tools with one of its customers and was paid in 14 days instead of 90.
  • MarkMaster is a Tampa-based company that provides name badges, nameplates, rubber stamps, signs, banners and decals to Fortune 500 companies. It has grown revenue more than 300 percent using Ariba Discovery.

Road Map: Making the Impossible Possible – and Simple
With the planned infusion of analytics from SAP and SAP HANA support for the Ariba Network, SAP and Ariba intend to enable companies to harness the power of the more than 15 years of transactional, relationship and member-contributed content on the Ariba Network to make more informed buying, sales and financial decisions. Companies, for instance, are intended to be able to access market data, supplier information, transaction history and contract terms in real time and analyze this information through a single, beautiful interface from anywhere, at any time, using any device.

"The connectivity of the Internet is fueling a new kind of hyper-connected company that is connecting with its employees, customers, partners and suppliers and leveraging those connections as a community to solve important business problems," said Michael Fauscette, group vice president, Software Business Solutions, IDC. "By blending social, mobile and collaborative business applications, providers like SAP are fast moving into this new territory to drive the next level of productivity and customer innovation."

For more information on SAP cloud solutions, visit www.sap.com/cloud. For announcements, blog posts, videos and other coverage during SAPPHIRE NOW + SAP TechEd Madrid, visit the Events Newsroom.

SAPPHIRE® NOW + SAP® TechEd Madrid
In 2012, SAP again brings together its largest ecosystem education event series with its premier customer conference for a co-located event to be held in Madrid, Spain, from November 13-16. With SAPPHIRE® NOW, SAP offers its customers, partners, and prospects even more opportunities to engage in dialogue with peers, participants and thought leaders around the globe, and can gain insight as to how SAP is delivering on its product strategy and helping organizations around the world to run better. SAP® TechEd brings IT managers, software developers, administrators, and business process experts together to learn in an interactive environment directly from the experts responsible for cutting-edge SAP technology. The co-located event provides access to the entire SAP ecosystem and enables attendees to learn how SAP can help their organizations run like never before. Follow on Twitter at @SAPPHIRENOW and @SAPTechEd, and join the conversation at #SAPPHIRENOW and #SAPTechEd. For more information, visit the SAP Newsroom.

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About Ariba, an SAP Company
Ariba is the world's business commerce network. Ariba combines industry-leading cloud-based applications with the world's largest web-based trading community to help companies discover and collaborate with a global network of partners. Using the Ariba® Network, businesses of all sizes can connect to their trading partners anywhere, at any time from any application or device to buy, sell and manage their cash more efficiently and effectively than ever before. Companies around the world use the Ariba Network to simplify inter-enterprise commerce and enhance the results that they deliver. Join them at: www.ariba.com.

About SAP
As market leader in enterprise application software, SAP helps companies of all sizes and industries run better. From back office to boardroom, warehouse to storefront, desktop to mobile device – SAP empowers people and organizations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively to stay ahead of the competition. SAP applications and services enable more than 197,000 customers (includes customers from the acquisition of SuccessFactors) to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and grow sustainably. For more information, visit www.sap.com.

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