TechnologyAccounting SoftwareSAP to take on Sage and Microsoft

SAP to take on Sage and Microsoft

In a move set to make accountancy a new battleground for software providers, German software giant SAP has launched a new product that will compete directly with UK suppliers Sage and Microsoft Business Solutions.

Link: Sage delivers strong interim results

The company is determined to steal a significant proportion of the sector and has commissioned a competitive analysis report into Sage and seven other UK software providers.

Tim Osman, head of small and medium-sized business for SAP UK, said accountants are key if the company is to succeed. Part of its attack on the sector will be the launch of an ‘accountant influencer’ programme in direct competition to the Sage accountants club. ‘Over time we aim to take a lot of business off Sage,’ said Osman. ‘We believe there is an opportunity to dominate the sector.’

According to Sage, 93% of accountants recommend its software to clients, and around 7,000 are members of the accountants club. If SAP can take a large proportion, it will be on its way to UK market domination.

Dennis Keeling, chief executive of the BASDA, the main accounting software standards setter, said it was a ‘very good idea’ for SAP to launch the accountant influencer programme, but said it faces a tough challenge to persuade businesses to swap software. ‘People that buy accountancy systems are cautious people,’ he said.

Keeling and Osman agreed there would be a continuation of the consolidation trend. ‘I see a lot of software companies going under,’ said Keeling.

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