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Over the past two days I was sweating a lot. Was it the weather or was the intensity in the room? As new players like Google, Apple, Uber and Faraday Future entering the business of mobility, some automotive companies may be sweating bullets. For them the future seems a bit like ‘sink or swim’!

In the spirit of close collaboration with SAP, 21 representatives from 18 automotive suppliers and OEMs met at SAP’s annual Automotive Advisory Council in the tropical June heat of Walldorf, Germany to provide feedback and guidance and to learn more about latest SAP innovations and roadmaps.

Uli Muench, head of SAP’s Automotive Business Unit, kicking off the 2017 event.

To set the scene, the strategy consulting firm Oliver Wyman kicked it off, presenting their latest research in the automotive industry and their perspective of digital transformation in automotive and mobility.

Council members discussed how to leverage state-of-the-art technology to gain a competitive advantage. They openly shared experiences from their recent projects with S/4 HANA, Analytics and Fieldglass.

Based on the priorities of the council members, SAP shared updates and recent innovations in S/4 HANA oOn Premise and S/4 HANA Cloud, SAP Leonardo, SAP SuccessFactors, Machine Learning, Analytics, and SAP Cloud Platform.  With SAP innovations and a continuously growing product portfolio, SAP’s recently introduced Transformation Navigator was presented using an example of one of the council members.

The networking included a welcome reception on Monday night and a Heidelberg tour with a historic tram, followed by a BBQ dinner on Tuesday.

To me, the three primary take-aways are:

  • Council members provide invaluable insights that help us to improve and further shape future industry solutions
  • Automotive council members confirmed their strong commitment to having a very open dialogue with SAP
  • Council members are early adopters of SAP innovation

The event received excellent feedback, such as:
“An all-around successful event to which we continue to commit in the future.”
“A valuable platform for discussions, dialogue, and impulses. Time well spent.”

A big ‘Thank You’ to all council members, to presenters and to the entire team of SAP’s Automotive Team for organizing and hosting this event.

Automotive council members after two hot days in Germany

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