investor awards SAP compliance and bloggers

More SAP awards, first wired and now this from Germany.

One of the reasons people buy our stuff is so that they can improve financial controls, transparency and the like, so it is good to see SAP getting some praise for how we deal with the financial analyst community. 

The financial analyst guys scored the investor relations award in Germany (from Capital magazine and Capital and the Deutsche Vereinigung für Finanzanalyse und Asset Management (DVFA)), winning both the overall prize, and that for the Eurostoxx 50 award.

If our own financials are clear, transparent and we are seen as open and honest, then I think we can help play a role in shaping the compliance solution landscape, not just in terms of writing code, but as an example of good business practice ourselves. The IR guys do a great job, but this stuff starts at the top, with the CEO and the CFO.

If I was buying software, the vendors long term relationship with the investment community would be a good place to start.

You can read the full article in German here.  I’ll attempt a vague, with poetic licence, translation of a couple of the key quotes.

1.Kagermann commented: Management is not allowed to concede to the short-term pressure of the market. We have to find a balance between growing long-term and quarterly numbers. Backbone is important.

2. “When Kagermann says the margins will improve, you can  bet on it”, said Merrill-Lynch-Analyst Raimo Lenschow from London.

3. Kagermann, the Physics professor, was called “integrity personified”  by the Börsen-Zeitung (the German Market magazine)

4. “SAP is what one would call typically German”, said Knut Woller Analyst at HVG, “solid and correct. Oracle tends to the rhetorical overstatement, but the operative development speaks clearly for SAP.”

5. Kagermann stated “I want to know exactly what our investors think about us” When the first hedge funds moved into the German equity market, he met with the key players. And as blogging took off he invited (well Jeff did), bloggers to Sapphire. He met a very experienced IT person at a bar (I think he means Niel) who regularly reads and comments about SAP, “since then, I take them seriously” Said Kagermann 

I also think it is rather neat that a german journo from the major financial magazine here picked up on the blogging angle in the same sentence as hedge funds.

I like working for a company run by someone the investment community trust. As an insignificant shareholder, I like it even more.

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7 thoughts on “investor awards SAP compliance and bloggers”

  1. Your blog entry sounds more like an advertisement for the bureaucracy! Buy our software and you can sell it as being compliant to your shareholders’ needs. The problem is your speaking to the entrenched bureaucracy of your customer. A bureaucracy that will do anything to maintain their salary and pension benefits.

    Where’s the opportunity for innovation when the hierarchy is explicitly supported within SAP? I have stated in my blog that “SAP is the bureaucracy”, you with this entry have now proved it.

  2. Paul,
    I thought I wrote a post that said SAP does a good job with its own governance, and that our CEO has the respect of the analyst community. This is a good place for SAP to talk about compliance related software from.

    In the same post I link to SAP being rated in the wired top 10, so I’m confused as to where my suport for bureaucracy comes in. If you read the rest of my blog, I think you will find me equally critical of bureaucracy and of 2.0 hype.

  3. Thomas – I am of the view that SAP is changing but I do take what you say about German magazines with a sack of salt who for years have had a policy of not upsetting SAP for fear of having advertising pulled. Fortunately, bloggers don’t have that problem 🙂

    To your point about Neil and Henning, yes, I had the same experience in Berlin at a previous SAPPHIRE and earlier still in Amsterdam. He is the perfect foil for Hasso the Pitbull 🙂

  4. Dennis,
    SAP spends much less on German press advertising than do Adidas, Allianz, Daimler, telekom and so on, so I dont buy that argument. Computerwoche is one of our harshest critics….
    The award process was run by the DVFA, so I dont think it was a pr exercise.

  5. I see your point my comment is not that clear. What I am saying is that organizations are now defined by the software that they use. If you want to change your organization to something more innovative, then the software has to incorporate the changes before the organization can or will change.

    Within SAP the hierarchy is the default organizational structure. Therefore the hierarchy or bureaucracy are explicitly defined and supported by SAP, leaving no alternative for the firm to alter its organizational structure.

  6. Thomas – my point is not the level of spend per se but the power SAP has over the press in that part of the world. But…I do acknowledge that SAP is changing. Just how much remains to be seen.

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