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Germany's No.1 Company Outlines Iraq Ambitions

(MENAFN Press) BAGHDAD, Iraq “ February 14, 2013 “

SAP - Germany's largest company and the world's leading business software company - has announced that it is ramping up its operations in Iraq.

Sam Alkharrat, Managing Director, SAP Middle East North Africa, (MENA) and Amr Ghoneim, Managing Director“ SAP North Africa & Levant (NAL) region and Iraq, today hailed the country's potential for IT-fuelled growth and outlined SAP's capacity to play an influential role in the process.

"Iraq is an exciting market for SAP," said Alkharrat, speaking in Baghdad.

"This is a country where IT innovation can be truly transformational and provide the very basis for a more sustainable, connected and empowered future that not only capitalizes on natural resources, but also serves as the basis for a diverse, knowledge-based economy."

Now in its 41st year, and with 232,000 global customers across 25 industries, SAP recently emerged as Germany's largest company by market capitalisation, and has experienced 12 consecutive quarters of double-digit software revenue growth.

The company's current global growth strategy includes doubling its addressable market, reaching 1 billion people and generating global revenue of ‚ 20 billion by 2015.
"SAP has a multi-pronged innovation agenda comprising synchronized investments in five interconnected elements: extending a leadership position in Applications, broadening its footprint in Analytics, expanding its reach through Mobile, becoming a profitable leader in the Cloud, and growing the fastest in Technology and Database," explained Alkharrat.
MENA is pivotal to SAP's strategy, with the company recently announcing a four year additional spend plan across the region that entails hiring more than 500 additional employees, tripling the company's existing consulting capabilities, opening several new offices and expanding the partner ecosystem and the SAP University Alliances program.

The plan also encompasses the region's first IT-specific Training and Development Center, which will certify more than 2,000 new consultants within the next four years, as well as further accelerate and extend the localization and Arabization of SAP solutions.

Iraq figures strongly in SAP's MENA expansion drive and, in February 2012, the company become one of the first of its kind to commit to an in-country business development presence.

Already, SAP is distinguishing itself for an ability to provide both enterprise and government entities with the technological resource to scale in a rapid, cost-effective manner.

In particular, SAP's oil and gas experience is catching the eye. The majority of Fortune 500 companies in the oil and gas industry currently running SAP, and the company has 25 years' worth of experience providing integrated and specifically tailored software solutions covering the full oil and gas industry value chain, including upstream, supply and trading, refining and manufacturing, downstream marketing and retailing, optimal management of assets, as well as safe and sustainable operations.

Alkharrat also highlighted SAP's ability to empower small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), noting that nearly 80 per cent of SAP's customers hail from the SME sector.

"SAP understands the unique needs of small and midsize businesses and entrepreneurs," he said.

"We want to see SMEs in Iraq that are more agile and able to operate around the clock. We want to see SMEs with enhanced visibility and decision making that can not only lead to better employee productivity, customer engagements and responsiveness, but also help them keep pace with larger companies and gain a competitive edge in their marketplace."

Outside of the business arena, SAP aims to boost local knowledge and stoke vocational skill sets through initiatives like the SAP University Alliance (UAP), which provides faculties with the tools and resources needed to teach students how technology can help enable integrated business processes and strategic thinking.
"IT is no longer on the side-line. IT is the business," added Alkharrat.

"By combining vision with technology, astute businesses and organizations of every size can outperform the competition, create opportunities, and be truly successful in a global economy."

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