SAP intends to give customers and partners a significant update on its planned on-demand software, known as A1S, at an event taking place in New York on 19 September.
Aimed at small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs), A1S is a totally new offering based on SAP's NetWeaver middleware, and is due to ship in early 2008. SAP has described A1S as an entire suite of hosted business applications including sales, financials and procurement software, which it will initially manage remotely in its datacentres.
The applications vendor has spoken vaguely about A1S over the course of this year, and admitted some development problems, but has yet to provide specific details about the software in terms of both its technological make-up and pricing. More recently, SAP has been promising to release further information about A1S, including its final product name, some time in September.
A1S will be SAP's third offering in the SME space, joining two existing ERP (enterprise resource planning) and CRM (customer relationship management) applications suites – All-in-One targeting large midmarket companies and Business One for small businesses.
Hosting the A1S event will be SAP CEO Henning Kagermann and deputy CEO Léo Apotheker, according to a company spokesperson. Also on hand will be Peter Zencke, an SAP board member, who also heads up the company's research activities and Hans-Peter Klaey, president of SAP's SME (small to midsize enterprise) business unit, as well as other SAP executives.
The executives will present "a comprehensive overview" of A1S and live demonstrations of the technology, and will be joined on stage by customers and partners, the SAP spokesperson said.
The timing of the event came down to logistics as to when executives, customers, partners and the venue were available, the spokesperson added.
SAP's event happens to coincide with the closing day of Dreamforce, Salesforce.com's annual user conference, taking place in San Francisco.
SAP's A1S will compete with Salesforce.com's established on-demand CRM software as well as hosted offerings from NetSuite Inc. and Microsoft Corp.'s Dynamics Live CRM.