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SAP Adds Hadoop to Arsenal; Appoints Wainwright to Head Financial Services

SAP – which sells its own HANA in memory data platform, and its IQ analytics database – is now reselling Hadoop in partnership with Hortonworks and Intel. The agreements allow SAP to directly offer a fuller portfolio of big data products, as organisations are seeking unified access to both structured and unstrauctured data. That most certainly includes financial services organisations, which will come under the focus of new global head Ross Wainwright.

Specifically, SAP is reselling Intel Distribution Apache Hadoop and the Hortonworks Data Platform with SAP HANA. Intel’s Hadoop distribution is a proprietary one, incorporating performance and security improvements that leverage specialised instructions in Intel’s latest chips.  By contrast, Hortonworks has focused on delivering a full open source product.

“Enterprises today are looking for big data solutions that are simple and quick to implement that enable insight from all data in real time in a secure environment to improve business processes,” says Boyd David, vice president and general manager of Intel’s Datacenter Software Division. “With performance optimisations for Intel hardware as well as encryption and decryption improvements for better security, the integration of the Intel Distribution for Apache Hadoop with the SAP HANA platform provides enterprises with security and scalability without having to sacrifice performance.” Intel has also worked as a technology partner with SAP related to HANA.

“By reselling the Hortonworks Data Platform, SAP can assure their customers they are deploying an SAP HANA and Hadoop architecture fully supported by SAP, while giving them the benefits of a fully open source Hadoop distribution,” says Shaun Connolly, vice president, corporate strategy, Hortonworks. “Hortonworks is committed to contributing all of its innovations back to the Apache project, ensuring that 100 percent of their Hadoop distribution is open source.”

Separately, SAP has appointed Ross Wainwright to global head of its financial services business. Wainwright – formerly global head of professional services for the financial services business – takes over from Simon Paris, who is elevated to global head of strategic industries.

Like Paris before him, Wainwright’s role covers banking, insurance and capital markets. Traditionally, SAP has built a strong footprint in banking and in insurance, and gained a major presence in capital markets through its 2010 acquisition of Sybase.

The mission in capital markets is now to roll out its big data portfolio – now including Hadoop – to a user base that runs Sybase’s traditional database product, IQ and its RAP capital markets suite. HANA’s in-memory functionality is key to addressing the real-time needs of capital markets players, and SAP wil want to articulate its strategy for “Big Data in Motion” to customers and prospects. In that endeavor, it will likely find competition from the likes of Software AG and Tibco Software, and perhaps in the future from the likes of Pivotal, the EMC/VMware spinout.

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