Stepping Away from SAP/Ariba Uncertainty, Hubwoo Moves Its Network Vision Forward (Part 1)

Man in the middle – Hubwoo is a company caught in the middle of SAP's broader ambitions, with Ariba, to own the world's largest supplier network and installed base for P2P. The smaller ambition is to deliver greater value to current SRM customers and also defend its turf in the market through the use of a closely aligned partner. Given the uncertainty of the timing and closing of the Ariba deal (considering the ongoing DOJ investigation of potential antitrust concerns), Hubwoo's strategic importance to SAP remains solid to strong. Hubwoo is a hedge for SAP regardless of whether the Ariba deal is closed sooner, later, or even not at all.

Staying relevant – within this context of uncertainty, Hubwoo has decided to free itself from its past exclusive SAP focus to bring network value to global businesses using any technology, regardless of whether SAP end up adopting Ariba solutions, network capability, or related services. In a series of posts exploring this vision, as shared both in press releases and to the analyst community, we'll attempt to report as much as we can on how Hubwoo plans to stay relevant regardless of the forces outside of its control.

BFF (for at least for 3 more years) – it's no surprise that SAP would want to maintain its relationship with Hubwoo to hedge its core bets and maintain an overall P2P strategy that doesn't lock it into a single solution and deployment model. In this regard, Hubwoo recently noted in a press release that SAP has extended its BPO partnership agreement with the provider. According to the news, "through the renewal of the BPO agreement, Hubwoo will offer outsourcing and on-demand services 'powered by SAP® software' ... The agreement is now extended for an incremental minimum of three years beyond the five year term of the initial agreement."

The SAP agreement encompasses a range of solution areas including spend analysis (based on SAP Spend Performance Management toolset), e-sourcing, contract management, and, as mentioned, SRM enablement (including network management and connectivity, catalog management, search, e-invoicing, supplier portal, services procurement, and mater data synchronization. In the remainder of this series, we'll report on Hubwoo's hosted network capabilities and related solution roadmap elements.

- Jason Busch and Thomas Kase

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