SAP Channel Chief Exits As Oracle Prepares to Make Noise
Talk about ironic timing. SAP Channel Chief Pat Hume is stepping down just as rival Oracle emerges from a quiet period and potentially prepares to make some more noise in the channel. Also of note: SAP VP of Public Relations Bill Wohl has apparently jumped to Hewlett-Packard. Here’s the update and the spin, as only The VAR Guy can imagine, er, report it.
CRN reported Hume’s departure earlier today, stating that Fritz Buemeyer will assume Hume’s responsibilities. Also, Bloomberg reports SAP VP Bill Wohl has joined HP to head marketing. Could Hume follow Wohl to HP, where former SAP veteran Leo Apotheker now calls the shots as HP’s CEO? Hmmm… That’s pure speculation on The VAR Guy’s part. But he’s poking around for answers.
Meanwhile, SAP has a pretty deep channel bench. Former HP Channel Chief Kevin Gilroy is SAP’s senior VP, North America. And Executive VP Doug Merritt has been accelerating SAP’s channel cloud strategy, which involves Business ByDesign — a SaaS platform that competes with Salesforce.com and Microsoft Dynamics.
After suffering some serious management and product turbulence in 2009, SAP has been in recovery mode in recent months. The company’s stock is trading near a 52-week high. Alas, The VAR Guy forgot to buy shares during the dip…
Sleeping Giant Awakens
Meanwhile, sources say Oracle is awakening from a quiet period. It sounds like Oracle Channel Chief Judson Althoff and his team could be a bit more chatty over the next few weeks. Perhaps Althoff will offer some clues about where he will next take the Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN) Specialized partner program.
Althoff is notoriously silent during Oracle’s lengthy quiet periods on Wall Street. But when the quiet periods end, Althoff tends to get very chatty on his blog and in media briefings. In particular, watch for Oracle to crank up the volume around the company’s SaaS and cloud channel efforts. Also, keep an eye on Oracle SaaS Expert Kevin O’Brien’s blog. Like Althoff, O’Brien has been silent during Oracle’s quiet period.
But the channel media silence at Oracle is about to end — just as Hume heads for the exit at SAP.