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SAP snuggles up to IBM and MS

Signs deals, hires programmers

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SAP has announced new deals with IBM and Microsoft, including a plan to work more closely with IBM to sell products to retail customers. The two companies will share consulting knowledge and improve business process analysis and best practice. SAP for Retail, SAP NetWeaver, IBM Store Integration Framework and IBM WebSphere are among the products included in the deal.

SAP, at its annual customer conference in New Orleans, said it would work with Microsoft to boost web services. It announced closer integration between Microsoft .NET and SAP NetWeaver and improved interoperability between SAP software and Microsoft Office. The company will support Visual Studio.NET and join the Visual Studio Partner Program.

MS and SAP will jointly staff a "Collaboration Technology Support Center" in Walldorf, Germany to showcase products and support sales staff. They will also offer a joint marketing fund and have signed a patent cross-license agreement to facilitate technical collaboration.

In separate news, SAP will hire another 500 engineers for its centre in Bangalore this year, according to the Hindu Business Line. SAP started 2004 with 750 engineers and now has 900. By the end of the year it wants another 500 people. They will expand development work on technology platforms, applications and custom development.®

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