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SAP Licensees Switch to Proven Third-Party Support Leader to Avoid Reduced Service Level and Costly Upgrade; September 30 Notification Deadline Looms
LAS VEGAS - August 23, 2012 - Rimini Street, Inc., the leading third-party maintenance and support provider for enterprise software, including SAP AG (NYSE:SAP) software and Oracle Corporation's (NASDAQ: ORCL) Siebel, PeopleSoft, JD Edwards, E-Business Suite and Oracle Database software, today announced that the Company is helping SAP software licensees running R/3 4.6c, R/3 4.7, ERP 2004 (ECC 5.0) releases to extend the life of their mature SAP systems without the need to perform an expensive upgrade just to retain needed support capabilities and service levels. According to industry experts, as of March 2013, SAP will discontinue Extended Maintenance for these releases, forcing a significant portion of SAP licensees to phase into "customer-specific maintenance," which includes critical restrictions in its scope of service.
While the Extended Maintenance support window for these specific releases ends in March 2013, licensees must notify SAP by a September 30 deadline if they plan to evaluate other options, including switching to third-party support from Rimini Street. Otherwise, licensees will be forced to undergo an upgrade to a fully supported release or phase into customer-specific maintenance.
"In conversations with hundreds of SAP customers, many have not realized that they must act now in the next 30 to 45 days if they want to move off of SAP customer-specific maintenance from extended maintenance for older products," said R "Ray" Wang, principal analyst and CEO, Constellation Research, Inc. "Despite the support window ending in March 2013 for extended maintenance, SAP is requiring organizations to serve notice by September 30th, 2012."
According to Wang, SAP licensees who choose customer-specific maintenance from SAP will face the following downsides:
Color Spot Nurseries was facing the future loss of vendor support for its SAP 4.7C release when it decided to switch to Rimini Street. A distributor of high-quality plants to more than 2,000 retail and commercial customers in the U.S., Color Spot was able to avoid a costly forced upgrade to a more recent release and also significantly reduce its software maintenance and support fees while benefiting from Rimini Street's ultra-responsive support services and maximizing the return on investment by running its mature, stable SAP system for at least a decade or longer.
"When we learned that our 4.7C release would no longer be fully supported by SAP, we were faced with the tough decision of going through a forced, resource-intensive upgrade to ECC 6.0 or having to deal with the downsides of customer-specific maintenance," said Color Spot's IT director, Eric Robinson. "Once we discovered and assessed third-party support from Rimini Street, we were extremely pleased to be able to continue running our current stable SAP deployment, reduce our overall annual support costs from 20 percent to just nine percent of our IT budget, and still receive more responsive, relevant service. We love our SAP software and Rimini Street is helping us maximize the return on our SAP investment for the next decade or longer."
As part of Rimini Street's Support Services for SAP, Color Spot receives regular tax, legal and regulatory updates to help keep the organization in compliance with changes taking place at the local, state and federal levels. Color Spot also utilizes the Rimini Street Tax Engine for SAP Payroll, which performs "gross-to-net" withholding calculations for U.S. payroll taxes. The popular solution has been widely implemented and is offered as a vital component of Rimini Street's industry-leading tax, legal and regulatory update service, which provides the updates necessary for organizations to remain in legal and financial compliance on a global basis. To date, Rimini Street has distributed more than 35,000 tax, legal and regulatory updates to clients.
Since launching Support for SAP in 2009, Rimini Street offers the most comprehensive third-party SAP support option in the market today, assisting more than 60 organizations with operations in 70+ countries who have made the switch from vendor support. In addition to achieving significant savings, SAP licensees switch to Rimini Street Support for its innovative, premium-level service, which includes a named Primary Support Engineer (PSE) assigned to each client, 24/7 support coverage, 30-minute guaranteed response times, support for customizations at no additional fee and support for a minimum of 10 years for existing releases without required upgrades.
In the past year, Rimini Street has more than tripled its team of SAP support engineers to meet growing market demand. Each PSE brings to Rimini Street an average of more than 10 years of experience in the support, development, implementation and management of SAP applications, including SAP R/3 4.x, ECC 5.0, ECC 6.0, BW 3.5 and earlier releases used by the majority of SAP licensees worldwide. With a named PSE assigned to each client, Rimini Street has demonstrated ultra-responsive support by quickly and efficiently responding to critical system issues in an average of 3.5 minutes anywhere in the world. Rimini Street also offers Basis Services for SAP as an option to SAP clients. This integrated service offering enables licensees to utilize Rimini Street as a single provider of both third-party software support and Basis administration for their SAP software applications.
"Rimini Street is the software support provider of choice for leading organizations around the world, including global, Fortune 500 and midmarket companies, who trust and rely on us to support their complex, mission-critical SAP systems," said Rimini Street president and COO Sebastian Grady. "SAP licensees running SAP R/3 4.x, ECC 5.0, ECC 6.0, and BW 3.5 products and releases can remain fully supported with global tax, legal and regulatory updates and break/fix support delivered in minutes, 24x7x365, for a guaranteed 10 years without a required upgrade by switching to Rimini Street's proven services."
Rimini Street is the leading third-party provider of enterprise software support services. The company is redefining enterprise support services with an innovative, award-winning program that enables Oracle and SAP licensees to save 50 percent on annual support fees and save up to 90 percent on total support costs over a decade. Clients can remain on their current software release without any required upgrades or migrations for at least 10 years. Hundreds of global, Fortune 500, midmarket, and public sector organizations from virtually all industries have selected Rimini Street as their trusted, independent support provider. To learn more, please visit www.riministreet.com or call within the USA 888-870-9692 or internationally 702-839-9671.
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 Constellation Research, "Tuesday's Tip: Act Now To Leave The Door Open For SAP Third Party Maintenance Options," R "Ray" Wang, August 21, 2012