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With so many Oracle acquisitions in recent years putting pressure on SAP’s major markets already, Ellison’s gang has been a constant thorn in SAP’s side. The biggest sting, though, was a $1.3 billion jury award granted Oracle from SAP last year for intellectual property theft.


Like Oracle, Big Blue plays in most of the spaces SAP competes for, though IBM has been on far more cordial terms with the German giant, partnering in some cases to specifically beat back the Oracle threat for both companies.

SAP has been able to stop from running away with a lot of SAP’s CRM customers with the lure of SaaS. While SAP may be playing up its own SaaS Business One and Business ByDesign this year, Salesforce has a headstart.


Even Microsoft has been more nimble than SAP in recent years adopting SaaS CRM models. Some analysts estimate Microsoft could steal as much as three points worth of share in the coming year from SAP in that market. And that’s not counting the pressure Redmond puts on SAP with Microsoft Dynamics.


What Salesforce has done to SAP in the CRM market, Sage has done in ERP, banging up the big Goliath in the battle for SMB customers who just can’t afford the heavy entrance fees levied by SAP to leverage ERP.

6Its Customers?

SAP seriously annoyed its customer base in 2008 when it jacked up the price of maintenance contracts. And lack of business alignment in some SAP deployments has sparked multi-million-dollar lawsuits in recent years from high-profile customers such as Waste Management, Shane Company and the LA Unified School District.


This privately held software company has been giving SAP a devil of a time in the business intelligence arena for years, winning a customer base that includes 92 of the Fortune 100 companies.