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/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/handshake_198017.jpgSAP BusinessObjects has a long history of supporting a wide range of data sources with our BI clients. This commitment to diverse, and often complex, landscapes of data sources, operating systems, web-tiers, etc. has been a hallmark of the products. After SAP acquired BusinessObjects, some customers feared that all focus would be on integration with SAP BW and SAP ERP. While there is lot of work to be done on closing gaps there, we are equally focused on delivering capabilities into large and small customers, who have diverse landscapes.

And yet some customers, partners and community members have expressed concerns about this commitment.

This shows we have done a poor job in communicating and showing, in actions, that commitment.  As the General Manager for the customer segment who does not run SAP as their ERP, you have my word we have been investing and will continue to invest in this segment.

In an effort to help make it clearer, both in action and communication, that we are committed to our large and diverse customer base, I want to share some of the recent investments we have made.

Investment in tailored communications

In addition, we recognize that customers who do not have SAP BW or SAP ERP have different interests in the content of our roadmap. To that end we have added roadmaps just for these audiences to the Service Marketplace. The first of these tailored roadmaps to release is the Business Intelligence for non-SAP Business Suite customers. It is available with roadmaps on SMP or via a direct link to roadmap document.

Investment in existing solutions

With BI 4.x we invested heavily in improving the experience and capabilities of our core BI clients:  SAP BusinessObjects Web Intelligence, SAP Crystal Reports and SAP BusinessObjects Dashboards. Enabling them to connect to more sources (like Hadoop, Oracle EBS and Sybase IQ) and enabling them to bring their content to more users through mobile. We radically changed the semantic layer, which we know introduced some initial challenges, but will ultimately provide the ability to open the semantic layer up to a much broader array of sources.

Investment through partners

To continue to enable customers to leverage our solutions across diverse data landscapes, we will soon be releasing support for Oracle OLAP and Salesforce.com from our BI Clients. This is made possible through a partnership with Simba Technologies.  SAP BusinessObjects Analysis edition for OLAP will be the first client to add support of Oracle OLAP. SAP Visual Intelligence will be the first client that will support direct connectivity to Salesforce.com. Watch for updates on deliver timelines for these in the coming months.

Investment in new solutions

One final example that we have recognized a difference in requirements for the SAP BusinessObjects customer base who have SAP BW and those who do not, is in the data sources of recently added tools to the BI Portfolio. SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio and SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for Microsoft Office are both focused on delivering premium alternatives to the SAP BW/Bex clients, and therefore are not currently supported with SAP BusinessObjects Universes. In contrast, SAP Visual Intelligence made adding connectivity to BusinessObjects Universes a priority, delivering support for UNV and UNX within 4 months of the first release. In addition, building on SAP Crystal Reports direct connectivity commitment, it supports direct to data connectivity of the most common data sources and the lists of sources are constantly expanding.

We hope these announcements show our on-going commitment to the Classic BusinessObjects customer base and customers running diverse landscapes. We will continue to work on improving communication and ensuring that, regardless of your technical landscape and vendor strategy, you can count on Business Intelligence from SAP to support your needs. We will continue to communicate latest innovations through this newsletter and other events and webinars.

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