SAP Adds WAP, Payment Services to

PARIS (05/03/2000) - SAP AG will extend its offering, adding business-to-business payment processing functions and support for mobile users connecting via devices that use the Wireless Application Protocol (WAP), the company said today.

The company plans to integrate Visa International Inc.'s corporate purchasing system, offering payment and data delivery services, into, the companies said in a statement. This will enable companies to streamline procurement processes by connecting corporate buyers, suppliers and Visa member banks, according to the statement.

It will also cooperate with telecommunications equipment manufacturer Nokia Corp. to integrate the Finnish company's Wireless Application Protocol Server with the Mobile Workplace, SAP said today in a separate statement.

The corporate purchasing system will allow companies to initiate accounting and payment processes at the point of purchase with the click of a mouse, SAP said in a statement. SAP will integrate Visa's purchasing functionality into a new release of its electronic commerce software component, SAP Business-to-Business Procurement. The module will be available during the third quarter of this year to users of the Marketplace, an online service delivered by SAP spin-off SAPMarkets, according to the statement.

Later, the companies intend to offer the payment system to users of the Workplace enterprise portal. It will offer an automated end-to-end purchasing function with flexible reporting, Web-enabled reconciliation and approval. Critically for businesses operating in Europe's growing cross-border economy, the system will also deliver enhanced transaction data including analysis of VAT (value added tax) details, the companies said. In Europe, the applicable rate of VAT can vary from product to product, as well as from country to country.

With Nokia, SAP plans to take such functionality on the road. Users will be able to access information from applications using handheld devices such as mobile phones, the statement said. The companies will work first with enterprise customers they have in common, according to the statement.

In collaboration with Nokia, SAP plans to support development of MiniApps -- small underlying applications and services that can be deployed on mobile devices, the software company said. Its customers and partners will be able to tailor these applications for mobile workers who rely on mobile phones and handheld devices in their jobs, SAP said. These services can include travel expense accounting, competitive data, and e-mail messages, said SAP.

In February, SAP's new partners Visa International and Nokia announced plans to jointly develop secure systems for payments via mobile phones. [See "Nokia, Visa Team on Secure WAP Transactions", Feb. 8.]SAP AG, based in Walldorf, Germany, can be reached at +49-6227-747-474 or via the Internet at Nokia, based in Espoo, Finland, can be contacted at +358-9-5113-8193 or online Visa International, in San Francisco, is at

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