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RISE with SAP on the Microsoft Cloud: A year in review

Gepost op 24 maart, 2022

VP, SAP Business Unit, Microsoft

Today, we are announcing that Microsoft and SAP are advancing our partnership by deepening our commitment to each other’s platform. Microsoft will be the first public cloud provider to adopt the RISE with SAP solution internally to transform some of its large SAP ERP deployments. This takes place on the one-year anniversary of our partnership with SAP to offer the Microsoft Cloud as one of the infrastructure options for the RISE with SAP solution. This move deepens an already strong partnership and will allow Microsoft to accelerate our own SAP S/4HANA® modernization while enabling us to develop greater expertise and best practices to better serve our customers.

As part of its transformative journey and to gain operational efficiencies, SAP will optimize its IT operations for some critical internal business systems using the RISE with SAP operations model on Microsoft Azure. Customers and partners have experienced early success in accelerating their business transformation and simplifying their path to the intelligent enterprise. For example:

Company logos beginning at the left for the N B A, Atos, Fressnapf, and Wolverine Wordwide.

The National Basketball Association (NBA) chose to migrate its SAP® solutions and other IT resources to Microsoft Azure and leverage the RISE with SAP offering to facilitate its ongoing cloud evolution. The NBA has gained flexibility, scalability, and access to a wide range of data and AI services in Azure that will help the league deliver best-in-class fan engagement through data consolidation and reduced IT management overhead. “The RISE with SAP bundle is really strategic for the NBA,” says Puneet Toteja, Senior Director at NBA.

“With the built-in AI, data warehouse, and personalization capabilities of Azure, we can generate fan-centric experiences that bring together business, game, and fan data to enhance the ways people can enjoy interacting with the NBA,” remarks Sahil Gupta, Senior Vice President and Head of Application Development at NBA.

Fressnapf, the leading pet product retailer in Europe, has gained greater flexibility, scalability, and reliability using the RISE with SAP solution on Azure, which brings together the best-of-breeds: SAP as its central business platform and Azure as its scalable infrastructure platform.

“Microsoft always gave us open and honest advice and we could tell—they are in for the long game! We have chosen the partner closest to our heart,” says Benjamin Beinroth, CIO at Fressnapf.

Footwear, apparel, and accessories marketer and retailer Wolverine Worldwide made a commitment to migrate its data centers to Microsoft Azure in parallel with an upgrade to the RISE with SAP solution hosted on Azure. Wolverine Worldwide is moving to the cloud to support growth, improve agility, enhance employee experience, and improve speed to market.

Not only do customers prefer the Microsoft Cloud for their RISE with SAP solution implementation, but our ecosystem partners do as well. Atos, a global leader in digital transformation with 105,000 employees worldwide, has chosen Microsoft Cloud for its RISE with SAP solution implementation.

“We chose Azure to increase flexibility and scalability, with a system that we can adjust as required.  In addition, we have easier interoperation with the services on offer, like Teams and Power BI, and technologies like AI, machine learning, and chatbots,” explains Frédéric Aubrière, Group CIO at Atos.

Customers and partners choose Microsoft Cloud for their SAP solutions because of the ease of integration, breadth of advanced services and innovation, and the highest level of security and compliance. Microsoft offers the broadest set of connectors and APIs to enable quick integration into SAP solutions—whether improving productivity by integrating SAP applications and Microsoft Teams or enhancing data analytics with Power BI and SAP Analytics Cloud solution or automating and integrating SAP apps with other cloud data. These comprehensive services, tools, and capabilities have accelerated our customers’ and partners’ business transformation.

SAP and Microsoft: Integrate and co-innovate

We constantly strive to improve the user experience, simplify the automation and integration of SAP S/4HANA on the Microsoft Cloud, and accelerate customers’ business transformation. This partnership puts both SAP and Microsoft in a strong position to continue driving the best outcomes for customers with solutions from SAP in the public cloud.

We’re achieving this by focusing on addressing the needs of various SAP users:

SAP Business User

Microsoft Teams has become one of the most used applications on desktops and mobile apps for collaboration and communication. We have come a long way since we announced the expanded partnership between SAP and Microsoft to integrate Microsoft Teams across SAP solutions. This has enabled more scenarios, including SAP Business ByDesign, SAP Sales Cloud, and SAP SuccessFactors solutions, among others. Check out how Doosan created the Delightful Digital Workplace for its employees and how you can benefit from the integration of SAP SuccessFactors solutions and Microsoft Viva.

Developers

The innovation for SAP developers includes improvements in SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP) to increase availability and accelerate the development of SAP extensions. As part of our global expansion plan, we launched support in the Australia East region last year, making SAP BTP on Azure available in six regions, with more to be added in the coming months. We continue to add access to new security features in the cloud. SAP BTP now supports Azure Private Link, offering excellent private network connectivity between applications running on SAP BTP, Azure native services, and resources running in our customer’s subscription.

To architect for scalable and robust enterprise applications in the cloud, event-driven architectures are the strategic path forward. We are happy to announce the upcoming integration between the SAP Event Mesh capability and Azure Event Grid. This collaboration will greatly facilitate the integration of event-based architectures between Microsoft’s and SAP’s technology stacks. This bidirectional integration will enable scenarios such as Azure Logic App to be triggered by an event in SAP S/4HANA or an SAP software workflow triggered by an event in the Azure platform. This is further enhanced by improved integration of SAP Cloud Identity Services and Azure Active Directory, allowing for easier identity flows.

We will continue to build and share joint SAP and Microsoft reference architectures so customers can access best practices and guidance on how to deploy our new capabilities.

Administrators

The SAP Cloud Appliance Library tool has been a way to accelerate the creation of test and development systems for customers starting their journey to the cloud with SAP S/4HANA. Setting up production quality installations of SAP S/4HANA and implementing best practices to achieve performance, security, and cost optimization may still be challenging. Thanks to the partnership between SAP and Microsoft, it is now possible for customers to deploy production systems with SAP Cloud Appliance Library on Microsoft Azure. This functionality for production systems is currently only available in Azure and is a major productivity gain. With SAP Cloud Appliance Library, administrators can use a wizard with a simple UI flow to deploy an SAP and Microsoft approved SAP S/4HANA landscape, that is based on customer individual software stack definitions (via Maintenance Planner), SAP instance sizing, and high-availability options. Moreover, it benefits not only greenfield implementations, but in combination with the new “DMO to Azure” tool, it supports the conversion from on-premise SAP ERP to SAP S/4HANA Cloud on Microsoft Azure.

Lastly, customers can further enhance productivity by integrating SAP applications with Azure native services. The recently launched Azure Blob Storage Connector for the SAP Information Lifecycle Management service is a great example of how we facilitate life-cycle management using Azure’s scalability, security, and cost benefits.

Respecting the customer’s choice

Microsoft understands that every customer is different. Each one has their own set of requirements and priorities, and when it comes to their SAP systems, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. The RISE with SAP solution offers the choice of Azure infrastructure, allowing customers to take the best path for their business. We are thankful for our deep, 25-year-long relationship with SAP and look forward to delivering more joint innovation to our customers.