ORLANDO: SAP has announced a cloud version of Business Suite 4 for HANA (S/4HANA) designed to simplify enterprise adoption of digital tools through the cloud.
The new edition will make S/4HANA's suite of tools available to customers through a cloud-based subscription service, thereby making it easier for business users to access and deploy the software.
SAP released the standard version of the S/4HANA business suite in February, claiming that it "marks the end of the IT stack".
The software could be deployed on cloud, on-premise or hybrid systems, but was not initially available via software-as-a-service subscriptions.
S/4HANA Cloud Edition marks one of SAP's tangible moves to deliver on its Run Simple initiative touted by chief executive Bill McDermott.
SAP now claims that the Cloud Edition allows enterprises to run the entire company on a single platform, with even critical business units, such as finance and accounting, digitalised in the cloud.
Bernd Leukert, a member of SAP's executive board, said in a keynote speech at SAP's Sapphire Now event in Orlando that S/4HANA is a means of creating a central point for software-driven business operations.
"It is the enabler for the reinvention of your existing business. S/4HANA is breaking down the barriers of existing departments and making so much more use out of data that already resides in your system, as the software is able to propose solutions beyond the traditional barriers of departments," he said.
The move to make S/HANA available through the cloud is also part of SAP's ambitions to expand the functionality and scope of its cloud offerings built on top of the HANA platform.
Leukert claimed that over 400 customers use S/4HANA, which he described as the "nucleus that every company needs" and the "starting point for the most comprehensive cloud offering in the industry".
Leukert also said that S/4HANA Cloud Edition will receive updates every quarter to add new services for use in the cloud, thereby furthering SAP's embracing of software-as-a-service.
He added that S/4HANA can now serve 24 industries, including banking, automotive, insurance and defence.
The HANA in-memory database platform is at the heart of SAP's software and applications suite. The company continues to develop capabilities for HANA, as evidenced by the new HANA Cloud Platform for the Internet of Things.
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