SAP launches Oracle assault

5 April 2005 German software manufacturer SAP has stepped up its efforts to woo customers from US rival Oracle, as the battle for leadership in the enterprise application market intensifies.

SAP initially launched its SafePassage programme in January, hoping to lure disaffected PeopleSoft and JD Edwards customers to its software. Initially it offered up to a 75% discount off its mySAP enterprise resource planning (ERP) software for those that already used some elements of the SAP suite.

The German software maker has now extended the offer to all 6,500 PeopleSoft and JD Edwards users.

“PeopleSoft and JD Edwards customers are facing the planned obsolescence of their software investment, and this is a major point of concern for companies that have already been forced to weather the takeover storm by Oracle,” said Bill McDermott, president and CEO of SAP America.

SAP claims it is already in talks with 200 PeopleSoft customers about migrating to SAP.

Such posturing underlines the intense competition prevalent in the ERP market. Oracle executives have been targeting SAP’s dominance of the market, finally succeeding in taking over PeopleSoft after an 18-month pursuit.

That takeover battle generated considerable uncertainty within the PeopleSoft and JD Edwards customer base, which potentially faced seeing its software become redundant.

Oracle has promised to continue supporting all of PeopleSoft’s customers, and is implementing plans to ensure those customers can migrate to its applications easily. With SAP keen to lure customers away from Oracle, end users look likely to benefit from the intense competition.

Both Oracle and PeopleSoft also recently clashed over the acquisition of retail software maker Retek. Oracle eventually succeeded in outbidding SAP, but in doing so paid a considerable premium for Retek.

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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