How to Understand SAP Indirect Access for Vendors Consulting

Executive Summary

  • SAP is increasing its use of indirect access.
  • There is a problem with the secretive nature of indirect access.

Introduction to Indirect Access

SAP has aggressively increased its use of indirect access in the past few years. The use of IA, or what we call Type 2 IA, (as differentiated from the legitimate Type 1 IA), as a competitive tactic was significantly highlighted through the loss of Diageo v SAP in a UK court. However, SAP had been using Type 2 IA against vendors for years, but this was kept mostly private. And this privacy on the topic of indirect access is one of the primary problems that vendors that compete with SAP face.

The Problem with the Private Nature of IA

SAP does not publish how it uses IA. In public SAP uses very general quotes designed to keep the topic at the highest level. They might say something about how customers need to pay to access SAP’s intellectual property. The problem with these statements is it comingles Type 1 IA with Type 2 IA. SAP likes to pretend that its new way of interpreting IA has been standard for quite some time, while in fact, it is an enlargement of IA.

Our Work with Software Vendors

We are working with vendors to provide information about SAP’s used of IA. If you have questions about IA, reach out to us.

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