Is Big Data big money?

SAP’s recently announced financial results, were generally very well received by the business community.  With revenues being boosted by growing customer demand for the company’s cloud and in-memory computing (HANA) offerings.   However, it was also interesting to read that some commentators were asking the question: is SAP trying to become more of a database company?

Undoubtedly SAP is dedicating a lot of resources to this area. It’s clear that SAP mean business, and is pouring vast resources into achieving this end goal. Important acquisitions have been made over the past couple of years such as Sybase, alongside a $337 million investment in the SAP HANA Adoption Program and a $155 million venture fund to spur development of applications compatible with HANA. Views on whether SAP will be able to achieve this gambit into the database market effectively range from the dismissive to the contemplative, but most see it as an interesting and achievable target that will provide value to customers. Ovum analyst Tony Baer describes the investments as a ‘logical first step’, but goes on to state that “SAP still has work to do to make its mark as a serious database contender” by solidifying its Big Data strategy to prove that HANA’s niche extends beyond turbocharging SAP Business Warehouse performance.

SAP has professed that Big Data, and the in-memory computing needed to successfully process it, is increasingly becoming the future of IT for many businesses. Ray Wang at Constellation Research who recently authored a  report on HANA, stating that overall, it is important for customers to avoid getting too distracted by vendor chest-beating, and instead they should seek to understand which use cases HANA is most suitable for right now.

At this stage this appears to be sensible advice. At the User Group we will be looking to provide you with all the latest updates and insights around HANA both through our SIGs and at the User Conference later this year.  So don’t miss out!

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