FC Bayern Munich partners with SAP for help with sports analytics

In this roundup, SAP inks a deal with FC Bayern Munich that includes sports analytics, and an Austrian retailer looks for better inventory control.

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SAP announced earlier this week that it's growing its contributions on and off the soccer pitch -- by expanding its relationship with the FC Bayern Munich soccer club.

The relationship started a while back with the team inking a deal to deploy the German software maker's customer relationship management (SAP CRM) software, alongside SAP's newly-acquired hybris e-commerce software, in an effort to bolster its relationship with its fans, including improving upon its loyalty programs, according to SAP.

This time, the two will be working for the next three years to build on that effort, improve the organization's overall economic competitiveness, but also to look for ways to improve the team's performance through analytics of the team's on-the-field performance.

"The two companies agreed very quickly that there was a lot of potential for a broader cooperation, with technology helping the club on and off the pitch. Especially in the area of player performance and health monitoring, SAP is expected to bring in a lot of value with [the] SAP HANA platform and the company's expertise in every dimension of data analytics," SAP said in a statement.

The announcement reflects SAP's latest notch in its effort to sell its enterprise software to sports teams and organizations, from the San Franscisco 49ers to the Women's Tennis Association.

And, of course, this won't be the first time SAP has worked with a top European soccer team.

Earlier this year SAP supplied the German National Men's soccer team with analytics used in its successful effort to win the FIFA World Cup.

SPAR and the SAP Customer Activity Repository

One of Austria's largest retailers is deploying SAP's new Customer Activity Repository software roughly one year after SAP unveiled the product, which it said provides businesses with a cleaner, more efficient way to manage inventory.

The idea is to have a true omni-channel system where up-to-date point-of-sale data is always on hand, and can alert a retailer when an item is in danger of selling out -- before it does -- and enables a customer to check on their mobile device if something is in stock before heading out.

Thomas Thalhammer, head of business solutions for Austrian retailer SPAR AG said redundant data was holding them back.

"We have multiple solutions, which deliver more or less the same kind of information," Thalhammer said in a statement. "We would like to integrate all this information into one central system."

Using the SAP Customer Activity Repository, SPAR will be able to collect a diverse set of customer, sales and inventory transactional data spread over its point-of-sale, e-commerce and ERP systems, according to SAP.

"If we can combine all this data and provide it to our shop assistants in real time, they can guide customers as soon as they enter the store, they can answer questions quickly and accurately, and they can suggest other products and services that match the customer's needs," said Thalhammer.

ASUG survey on HANA adoption

In case you missed it, be sure to check out the recent survey on SAP HANA adoption published by The Americas' SAP Users' Group (ASUG).

One key finding is that many organizations just aren't sure if they really need it.

"Three-quarters of the customers who said they have not yet purchased any SAP HANA products say they can't identify a business case that justifies the cost. That reason topped the next closest set of responses by nearly 40% --we allowed for multiple responses. Following that reason were skillset, roadmap and upgrade issues."

"What may be holding some customers back is the sentiment (as revealed in our survey) that SAP won't make them move to HANA -- at least, not in the near-term. A little less than three-quarters of those who said they have no plans to implement SAP HANA at this time believe that SAP will support their existing environments into the future or for at least five years or more."

Read more about ASUG's survey on HANA adoption here.

Next Steps

Does SAP's purchase of hybris give its customers more choice -- or just confuse them?

What can businesses learn from sports analytics?

Omni-channel commerce isn't just for retailers, says one CEO

Dig deeper on SAP trends, strategy and ERP market share

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