SAP Launches Innovative New Solution for U.S. Small and Midsize Businesses
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SAP Launches Innovative New Solution for U.S. Small and Midsize Businesses

SAP Joins Forces With Professional Services Business Unit of American Express

NEW YORK, March 27 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- SAP AG today announced the launch of the U.S. version of SAP(R) Business One, a new solution that extends the company's software expertise to a new segment of the small and midsize business (SMB) market. At the same time, in a major pairing of two of the most trusted names in technology and business services, SAP also announced that the Tax and Business Services (TBS) unit of American Express will distribute and provide support services for SAP Business One. Together, the two companies will also develop specialized vertical-industry editions of SAP Business One and establish a new distribution and support service model to meet the needs of small and midsize firms.

  (Photo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20020923/SFM002LOGO )

  SAP Business One

While many small and midsize firms have invested in multiple software applications, several report that they lack the ability to access the information they need, when they need it, to make critical decisions. They report a pressing need for easy access to real-time information. SAP Business One was designed to address these problems in an affordable, easy-to-implement solution. The solution helps small and midsize businesses streamline their operational and managerial processes by providing robust and fully integrated financial and sales management capabilities.

"The introduction of SAP Business One to the U.S. market is a significant addition to our product portfolio that will open up SAP's expertise in enterprise management to an entirely new segment of small and midsize business," said Bill McDermott, CEO and president, SAP America, Inc. "More and more small business owners are recognizing that business software is a tool not only to help them improve efficiency, but also to improve collaboration with customers, partners, suppliers, and distributors, ultimately giving them a competitive edge. SAP Business One offers a technology entry point for growing organizations hoping to achieve that edge."

SAP Business One supports companies with as few as ten and as many as several hundred employees, and can be implemented in as little as one week. The solution's award-winning Drag & Relate data navigation system provides users with intuitive data access simply by highlighting and dragging pieces of information on the screen. It features an integrated sales force automation system for pipeline tracking, opportunity management, strategic selling, and contact management. Key functionalities also include comprehensive financial management, with multi-currency, budgeting, and bank reconciliation; a complete inventory management system, with kitting and multi-level price lists; and a comprehensive reporting module that allows easy access to any data.

NextiraOne Federal, an enterprise networking solutions provider focused on the federal government, was able to replace multiple solutions with SAP Business One and have their fifteen users up and running after only two weeks. "With SAP Business One, we were able to streamline multiple solutions down to just one and, simultaneously, achieve much wider functionality than we had previously," said Duane Taylor, vice president of finance, NextiraOne Federal. "As a growing company in a competitive environment, it was important to us to work with an industry leader that could help us leverage technology to achieve our business goals."

In addition to the United States, SAP Business One is currently available twelve countries and fourteen languages. Part of SAP Smart Business Solutions, SAP Business One has more than 1,300 customers worldwide.

  American Express Partnership:
  New Distribution Model, Industry Versions of SAP Business One

The relationship between SAP and American Express involves two major components. American Express will serve as an individual reseller of SAP Business One and is building its own national network of highly qualified channel partners. In addition, American Express is working with SAP to develop specialized versions of SAP Business One, to be offered exclusively by American Express and its channel partner network under the brand SAP(R) Business One -- The American Express(R) Edition.

"Because American Express has been involved in helping small and midsize businesses make IT decisions and implement solutions for more than ten years, we have an in-depth understanding of their needs," said Tom Meador, CEO and president, American Express Tax and Business Services Inc. "We have a staff of 150 outstanding consulting and IT professionals in major metropolitan regions across the country and have committed to building an even larger network of qualified consultants to deliver the kind of service midsize firms typically cannot find."

American Express will provide qualified business partners that join the larger national network with day-to-day support on account management, as well as assistance in all aspects of marketing, sales, implementation, and support.

Working with SAP, American Express is already building a specialized edition of SAP Business One that will meet the unique needs of distribution and wholesale firms. Building on its expertise as a management consultant to firms in wholesale distribution, the first release of SAP Business One -- The American Express Edition will provide distributors with pre-integrated capabilities such as warehouse management, shipping manifest, multi-jurisdiction taxation, EDI, credit card authorization, and document management. The special edition will add other services and address additional vertical industries over time as well as incorporate services currently provided through other American Express business units. Clients using SAP Business One -- The American Express Edition will be able to obtain support for all of these capabilities and services with a single phone call from anywhere in the United States.

"Small and midsize businesses are looking for support from vendors with existing relationships, knowledge of their vertical and business processes, ample local resources, and the commitment to support them on site to achieve value over a long-term relationship," said Mika Krammer, research director, SMB Group, Gartner. "A network emphasizing quality, return on investment, strong relationships, and depth of industry knowledge instead of quantity of relationships equates to longer term growth for partners and users and meets the evolving needs of the marketplace."

"American Express combines an unparalleled brand reputation and vast SMB experience with a national network of knowledgeable experts to work closely with our clients. This relationship offers our clients the technology and long-term expert support they need to realize fast and sustainable return on their IT investment," said McDermott.

Following this launch, SAP and American Express will conduct a regional tour to introduce SAP Business One and SAP Business One -- The American Express Edition to qualified business partners and small to midsize firms in New York City, Long Island, New Jersey, Boston, Baltimore, Cleveland, Cincinnati, and Chicago. More information about the events and dates can be obtained by calling 1-866-836-7940.

About American Express

American Express Tax and Business Services Inc. is a professional services firm that provides innovative solutions for the financial and business consulting needs of small to mid-sized organizations. The firm has 54 offices in 16 states.

American Express Tax and Business Services employs CPAs but is not a licensed CPA firm. American Express Tax and Business Services operates in an alternative practice structure, through which it has a continuing professional services relationship with public accounting firms who perform attest services for its clients. American Express does not provide IT products and services to publicly held attest clients. American Express Tax and Business Services Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of American Express, a publicly owned company.

American Express Company is a diversified worldwide travel, financial and network services company founded in 1850. It is a world leader in charge and credit cards, travel, financial planning, business services, insurance and international banking.

About SAP Smart Business Solutions

SAP's Smart Business Solutions provide small and midsize businesses (SMBs) with affordable, easy-to-implement and scalable solutions to meet their technological needs. SAP Smart Business Solutions have a proven track record of helping companies across the globe enhance customer service, manage operations more efficiently and meet the unique needs of various industries. SAP offers partners two solutions designed to meet the diverse needs of SMBs: SAP(R) Business One, designed for smaller companies with less complex needs, and mySAP(TM) All-in-One, tailored solutions to meet the industry-specific needs of more sophisticated companies. More than 60 percent of SAP's current installations are in the small and midsize business market. More information available at http://www.sap.com/solutions/smb/ .

About SAP

SAP(R) is the world's leading provider of business software solutions. Through mySAP(TM) Business Suite, people in businesses around the globe are improving relationships with customers and partners, streamlining operations, and achieving significant efficiencies throughout their supply chains. Today, more than 19,300 companies in over 120 countries run more than 60,100 installations of SAP software. With subsidiaries in over 50 countries, the company is listed on several exchanges including the Frankfurt stock exchange and NYSE under the symbol "SAP." (Additional information at http://www.sap.com/ ).

Any statements contained in this document that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "expect," "forecast," "intend," "may," "plan," "project," "predict," "should" and "will" and similar expressions as they relate to SAP are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. SAP undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations. The factors that could affect SAP's future financial results are discussed more fully in SAP's filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC"), including SAP's Annual Report on Form 20-F for 2001 filed with the SEC on March 28, 2002. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates.

NOTE: SAP, mySAP, mySAP.com, xApps, and other SAP products and services mentioned herein as well as their respective logos are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP AG in Germany and in several other countries all over the world. MarketSet and Enterprise Buyer are jointly owned trademarks of SAP AG and Commerce One.

All other product and service names mentioned are the trademarks of their respective companies.

  CONTACT:
   For customers interested in learning more about SAP products:
   Global Customer Center:  +49 180 534-34-24
   United States Only:  1-800-872-1SAP (1-800-872-1727)

   For more information, press only:
   Jim Dever, +1-610-661-2161, 
Email Contact, EST
   SAP Press Office, +1-610-661-3200, 
Email Contact, EST
   Amanda Orr, Burson-Marsteller, +1-202-530-4541, 
Email Contact,
   EST
   Laura Hill, American Express, +1-212-372-1741, 
Email Contact,
   EST

CONTACT: For SAP products, Global Customer Center, +49-180-534-34-24, or
United States Only, +1-800-872-1SAP (1-800-872-1727), or For more information,
press only, Jim Dever, +1-610-661-2161, or Email Contact, EST, or SAP
Press Office, +1-610-661-3200, or Email Contact, EST, both of SAP; or Amanda
Orr of Burson-Marsteller, +1-202-530-4541, or Email Contact, EST, for
SAP; or Laura Hill of American Express, +1-212-372-1741, or
Email Contact, EST

Web site: http://www.sap.com/