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Author's profile photo Joseph Zarb

How should multi-nationals with major operations in China embrace RISE with SAP S/4HANA Cloud? Here’s an approach…

SAP has always prided itself on its customer first, customer choice approach to addressing our customer’s wants and needs when it comes to deployment and implementation options.  As a market-maker, SAP believes our customers are best served when they have the flexibility to choose how and where their solutions are deployed and implemented, and to that end SAP expends tremendous effort and investment to assure a healthy and diverse ecosystem of systems integrators and technology vendors, who are trained and certified on SAP solutions to help our customers reach their goals.

China is no different, but China is different.

SAP has humbly earned the trust of many, many, many of the great global brands that delivery products and services that we all rely on as business professionals and consumers.  Some of these brands are multi-national corporations, some are global players but anchored in a particular region or country.  It may be surprising, but it is not uncommon, for a single multi-national brand to have multiple RISE with SAP S/4HANA deployments, servicing unique aspects of their business across several countries and continents.  Particularly, if they are a conglomerate or massive multi-national and subjected to diverse localized industry and government regulations.  Many of these brands have major operations in China and they rely on SAP ECC and SAP S/4HANA, and desperately want to get into the RISE with SAP S/4HANA Cloud swim lane to stay in lockstep with SAP’s innovation agenda.

China’s unique telecommunication, data privacy, and data transmission laws can make the task of remote management and monitoring of systems and cloud services a challenge.  Additionally, China’s Cybersecurity Classified Protection System (CCPS) can be a challenge for many multi-nationals to comply with.  Further, companies in China who service a multi-national customer base also wish to move to RISE with SAP S/4HANA Cloud but are looking for infrastructure and skills that possess the presence and language skills to address Chinese sensibilities.

There ARE deployment options in China.

In line with SAP’s customer choice policy, SAP offers three options for Multi-Nationals and Chinese companies to deploy their RISE with SAP S/4HANA Cloud solutions in China.  They include RISE with SAP S/4HANA Cloud, private edition on Microsoft Azure or on AWS in China, and the “customer data center option.”

The service delivery, protocols, policies, architecture, and practices are fairly uniform across all of these deployment options, but there are some noteworthy standouts in the customer data center option that we will expand on.

RISE with SAP S/4HANA Cloud, private edition, customer data center option, or “CDC” for customer data center, is the hybridization of our RISE strategic cloud solution from SAP, where a company can run SAP S/4HANA as a cloud service from their data center while accessing SAP BTP, SAP Signavio, and all the other wonderful innovative RISE components from the public cloud – aka a mixture of internal and external cloud services.  You can learn more about CDC at this web page: Customer data center option | RISE with SAP .  Like all of our cloud solutions, we offer a diversity of deployment options and with CDC we support Lenovo, HPE, and Dell.  Each of these world-call partners and suppliers offers their infrastructure as a service (IaaS).  Lenovo delivers Lenovo TruScale to SAP for repackaging and delivery to our customers under a single holistic RISE contract which includes the infrastructure as a service (IaaS), complimented by SAP’s delivery of platform as a service (PaaS) and SAP S/4HANA software applications (SaaS) – as a cloud OpEx contract, owned and operated by SAP with a single SLA assured by SAP.

Enter Lenovo

In China however, SAP has worked extensively with Lenovo and their unique presence, understanding of the local market, and breadth and reach of product and service delivery capabilities to add a little more to our joint RISE with SAP S/4HANA Cloud, private edition, customer data center option.

SAP relies on infrastructure as a service (IaaS) delivered by Lenovo and packaged under the services brand name of “TruScale.”  TruScale services enable customers to take advantage of on OpEx model, aligned with their SAP contract term to assure the most efficient use of capital while gaining immediate access to advanced SAP technology and SAP services.  A little different from traditional, public hyperscalers, Lenovo TruScale goes a step further by delivering a “mini-hyperscaler” directly in a customer’s data center or theirs, whichever the customer prefers.

SAP and Lenovo have teamed to focus on quality of service, cost of delivery, and compliance with a large majority of China’s unique data requirements, and delivery of in-country skills for much of the IaaS and PaaS needs for the unique, large, and promising Chinese market.

Here’s a net of our collaboration with Lenovo and what it means to multi-nationals with major operations in China who wish to embrace RISE with SAP S/4HANA Cloud:

SAP’s strategic RISE Cloud offering deployable in a Chinese Customer Datacenters is specifically designed to:

  1. Secure an SAP cloud infrastructure and platform in a customer data center, that is backed by SAP, managed by SAP, and guaranteed to perform by SAP via an SAP Service Level Agreement (SLA).
  2. Empower customers who want to run in their data center (on-premises) and stay in lockstep with SAP’s cloud innovation agenda, including ML/AI (Machine Learning / Artificial Intelligence), LLMS (large language models), etc.
  3. Leverage SAP’s hardened and proven toolchain and service delivery procedures and RACI to assure quality of service, delivered with local sovereign skills delivered by Lenovo.
  4. Leverages Lenovo’s local pricing, delivery expertise, and capabilities to assure cultural, language, and skills sovereignty for daily operational delivery.
  5. Meet many of the needs of challenging Chinese industry regulatory compliance topics which may prevent running SAP in a public shared hyperscaler (multi-nationals, state-owned enterprises, public sector customers, and others.)
  6. Addresses many of the data sovereignty needs of customers, governments, and industry participants to keep their payload data inside their China, governed by the laws of China.
  7. Provide a powerful and novel approach to address the desire to embrace a cloud OpEx model, while benefiting from a high-performance dedicated system with low latency.

Tell us what you think, or if you have any questions – add to the discussion with your comments below.

Joseph Zarb
Head of RISE with SAP – Customer Data Center
SAP RISE Global GTM Execution
10 Hudson Yards, 51st Floor, New York NY 10001 USA


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