Oracle launches major offensive for OffSAP program

Oracle last week launched a major offensive across the Asia Pacific aimed at migrating the SAP R/3 installed base to its OffSAP program, which has already registered 1000 customers globally.

Oracle Australia managing director Ian White confirmed 1000 SAP customers have registered for OffSAP with 40 already beginning the transition to Oracle.

In Australia, Oracle consultants have met with 202 SAP customers and White said 14 percent have requested followup.

"The main concern for SAP customers is their ability to reduce cost of ownership and leverage open standards to integrate deeper industry functionality," he said.

"Expensive licensing and a difficult upgrade path for R/3 users is a real pain-point for customers which is why we launched the migration program."

White pointed to a Nucleus Research report which found ongoing software maintenance for SAP is 71 percent more expensive.

He was responding to SAP claims in an article published in Computerworld last week (December 7, p3, SAP picks up staff along Oracle's buyout trail.)

Contrary to SAP claims that Oracle is only growing through acquisition, White said recent local wins include TabCorp, Fosters, Bunning and the Coventry Group.

"We are warning customers that SAP's ABAP-based proprietary technology platform is becoming obsolete in a world of open standards and interoperability," he said.

"Although in the middleware space, SAP's Netweaver isn't really a competitor if you compare product offerings with the likes of IBM and BEA; there are also plenty of SAP customers running on Fusion middleware."

In the future, White said, a company's applications will not come from a single vendor, but they need to work together as if they do.

"SAP's strategy discourages the deployment of mixed vendor SOA environments. Because Oracle supports opens standards, customers can substitute third-party components for any of these elements in the Oracle infrastructure or can easily deploy its middleware within environments based on competing platforms such as IBM WebSphere or BEA Weblogic," he said.

The OffSAP programs offers up to a 100 percent licence credit on SAP licences, a two-day migration workshop and a two-year deferred payment option with no payments or interest for six months.

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