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May 20, 2014

Microsoft and SAP to bring better business analytics to mobile and cloud

Enterprise software will be integrated with Azure and Windows mobile over next quarter.

By Jimmy Nicholls

Microsoft and SAP have announced an expansion of their 20-year partnership into mobile, data and cloud services, in plans expected to take effect by the end of June.

The deal will allow enterprise software firm SAP’s products to run on Microsoft’s cloud platform Azure, which will support a pay-per-use model and include an app library of SAP’s software.

Takeshi Numoto, corporate vice president, cloud and enterprise marketing, Microsoft, said: "This means customers will be able to get the mission-critical benefits of SAP software – used by 86% of the global Fortune 500 – on our enterprise-grade public cloud."

SAP programmes supported on Azure will include Business Suite, Business All-In-One, Mobile Platform, Adaptive Server Enterprise and the developer edition of SAP HANA, an analytics platform.

The firms have already rolled out greater integration between SAP’s business analytics and Microsoft Excel, and will continue to enhance collaboration between the two software lines through SAP Gateway for Microsoft.

There are also plans to develop and market a series of SAP mobile apps for Windows Phone, a move of dubious value given Microsoft’s low share of the smartphone market, which stood at 3% throughout 2013 according to a report by Gartner.

Steve Lucas, president of platform solutions at SAP, said: "We are proud of how we listened to our customers and together developed – and will continue to develop – innovative new programmes focused on the cloud, mobility, analytics and interoperability that we expect will provide unparalleled value for our customers."

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