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SAP banks on mobile, cloud

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Mobile, social media, cloud technology and big data are key factors driving information and communications technology spending, says business application firm SAP. 

These factors are dictating companies' service strategies, said Francois Lancon, president of SAP Southeast Asia.

A man checks out software products at SAP Forum Thailand yesterday. TAWATCHAI KEMGUMNERD

He said Thailand is the third-largest market for SAP in this region after Indonesia and Malaysia.

Mr Lancon said mobile technologies, social media and cloud-based services are pushing businesses to invest more in their IT infrastructure to increase competitiveness and reduce costs.

Globally there are more than 1 billion internet users and 15 billion internet-connected devices. Data usage doubles every 18 months, potentially creating both huge opportunities and critical challenges for businesses.

Mr Lancon said Thailand's mobile penetration rate exceeded 120%. Smartphone sales account for half of Thailand's mobile phone sales.

The local mobile data market is expected to be worth US$1.7 billion this year.

Mr Lancon said SAP saw no impact from the country's economic slowdown. He said the upcoming Asean Economic Community (AEC) has prompted organisations, especially mid-sized enterprises, to invest more in IT facilities.

SAP's new enterprise resource planning software utilises high computing processing, enabling users to get real-time information for faster decision-making and planning.

"Real-time information will be a crucial factor for corporate competition over the next few years," said Mr Lancon.

Shyam Prasad, vice-president of SAP Southeast Asia, said Thailand has high growth opportunities in the utilities, retail, telecom and consumer product sectors.

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