Outside of SAP, the future of  Business ByDesign is much-debated. As for Financials OnDemand, now “SAP Cloud for Financials”, there are plenty of questions. Who better to clear it up than Rainer Zinow, SVP of the Cloud Unit at SAP.

Zinow  sat down with the JD-OD team at Sapphire NOW 2013 to provide an update on how things have been going over the last year or so. He also sets the record straight regarding some tweeted info on Cloud for Financials that was heavily discussed.

The guys kick it off by talking about how ByDesign, which started out as a pure mid-market solution, has found its way into two new additional markets: 1) Subsidiaries of SAP’s Business Suite install base, and 2) Very large professional services deals, which were unexpected as wins when ByDesign was solely SME-focused.

Given that a number of  ByDesign subsidiary projects have gone live, Jon asks what kind of feedback SAP has received. Rainer cites a recent article in CIO Magazine in which the CIO of HILTI, Dr. Martin Petry, says he’s found a way to roll out a new country in 8 weeks – a real breakthrough compared to on-premise ERP (see the JD-OD interview with HILTI on ByD). Petry’s overall point? ByD is a lot faster to rollout, and, given the built-in mobility and cloud access, it’s well suited to subsidiary units. Last but not least, Rainer notes, Petry doesn’t depend on SAP to provide a country-specific version. ByDesign customers can now customize their own country-specific versions.

As SAP’s customers continue to customize ByD, the country count is going up – 20 SAP-created versions are expected by the end of the year, along with 26 additional country versions built by SAP customers. As for development resources, Rainer estimates that about 80 partners are building last-mile capabilities for customer-specific projects.

As for any confusion about ByDesign versus Financials OnDemand, Rainer has this to say: Financials OnDemand is nothing else than the kernel of financials in ByDesign. SAP then adds additional interfaces to Cloud for Financials,  so that other applications can feed into the sub-ledgers, which wouldn’t be needed in a ByDesign world. And SAP builds other applications on top of Cloud for Financials, some of which may be available to ByDesign customers in the future.

Show Notes

:32 ByDesign, moves into two new additional markets

2:13 HILTI’s ByDesign for subsidiaries experience

3:08 By year’s end, ByD will be in 20 countries; customers have customized 26 other country versions

4:11 80 partners have development capabilities to build ByD add ons

5:26 ByDesign vs. Financials OnDemand