SAP to wind down Business By Design software

Web-based software currently has just 785 customers.

Disappointed man

German software giant SAP is winding down development for its web-based Business By Design software, according to reports.

Business weekly Wirtschaftswoche said SAP would stop the development of the web-based software designed for SMBs, although existing customers will be able to continue to use it.

An SAP spokesman said on Saturday that development capacity for Business By Design was being reduced, but that the product was not being shut down.

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SAP, one of the world's biggest makers of business management software, originally projected that Business by Design - which was launched in 2010 - would reach 10,000 customers and generate $1 billion of revenue.

The product which cost roughly 3 billion to develop, currently has only 785 customers and is expected to generate no more than 23 million euros in sales this year, according to the magazine.

By comparison, in the second quarter, SAP's software and software-related service revenue stood at 3.35 billion.

SAP started working on Business by Design in 2003 to diversify sales beyond its traditional market of large corporations and government agencies, trying to compete with software sold by NetSuite, a company founded more than a decade ago by Oracle Chief Executive Larry Ellison.

The Wirtschaftswoche report said that ever since the SAP product's launch, customers had complained about technical issues and the slow speed of the software.

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SAP declined to provide any specific comment on investment expenditures, sales figures or customer numbers of Business by Design.

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