Third-party support provider Rimini Street today launched its support services for SAP products, which it promises will cut SAP support costs at least in half.
The announcement of a competing support program comes on the first day of Sapphire, SAP's largest annual user conference, which is expected to draw about 10,000 people this year. The offering extends to SAP R/3 releases, ECC 5.0, ECC 6.0 and BW 3.5.
Rimini Street's move also comes at a time when SAP is riding a wave of goodwill churned up by SAP's recent decision to delay a maintenance fee increase until it proves that the service is worth the money.
"We welcome our new clients into our service program for SAP products, and we look forward to serving a growing list of SAP licensees with our innovative service, ultra-responsive support, and an absolute commitment to each client's success," Rimini Street president and CEO Seth Ravin said in a press release.
Rimini Street's SAP support services will include support through 2020 and beyond for existing releases without any required upgrades. They also include named, local support engineers assigned to each client with no support calls off-shored; 24/7 support coverage with a 30-minute (or less) guaranteed response by a senior engineer; application fixes for serious issues; tax and regulatory updates as needed; and support for client customizations, interoperability and performance at no additional fee.
The third-party support provider, based in Las Vegas, announced that it would provide SAP support last year, just before Sapphire. The company already provides third-party support for Oracle's Siebel, PeopleSoft and JD Edwards software.
"We have taken over a year to carefully design our new service around the specific technical, functional and support response needs of SAP licensees, and we will deliver that support with only the most experienced engineers, having an average of at least 10 years' experience implementing, upgrading and supporting global SAP projects," Shawn du Plessis, Rimini Street's vice president of SAP Service Delivery, said in a press release.
Meanwhile, the cost increases associated with SAP Enterprise Support won't go into effect until key performance indicators (KPIs) are met, to the satisfaction of a group of 100 customers. SAP also stretched out the increases and will phase them in over seven years, instead of the four years it had originally planned.