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SAP identifies a fruitful market

By Gao Yuan (China Daily)

13:50, February 04, 2013

A SAP AG company logo on an apple displayed at a buffet during a news conference in Walldorf, Germany, on Jan 23. SAP, the biggest maker of business-management software, forecast at least a 12 percent gain in full-year earnings as it adds Internet-based programs to attract users and fend off competition from Oracle Corp. [Photo/China Daily]

Key innovation areas include computing via the cloud, mobile and HANA

SAP AG, the world's largest business-management software provider, expects China to become one of its top five markets globally in terms of revenue in the next two to three years as its growth in the country hits a record high, corporate executives said.

"China is no longer a small market for SAP. It is a very material part of our business," said Stephen Watts, president of SAP, Asia-Pacific Japan. As the market size continues to grow, China is the most important market strategically and it will be bigger than North America in the coming years, he added.

The growth rate of SAP's China business hit 17 percent on a four-year basis, making the market register about a quarter of the company's revenue in the Asia-Pacific region by the end of last year, according to the company.

The fastest growing market in the Asia-Pacific region was Japan, with an annual growth rate of 31 percent.

Watts predicted China is set to be a market that has more potential as the government plans to arm the nation with advanced information technology.

By 2014, China will become the world's largest information technology spender, overtaking Japan, said Watts.

The company, based in Walldorf, Germany, said on Jan 23 its operating profit in 2012 increased by 11 percent year-on-year to 5.21 billion euros ($7 billion), slightly missing the company's forecast of 5.25 billion euros.

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