SAP Cloud Push Accelerates, Business Travel Begins Recovery

SAP SE said that its business-travel unit started to see signs of recovery, and the company slightly raised its estimates for full-year cloud sales and profit after its push to get more enterprise customers on its Rise program picked up pace.

The company’s Concur business, which helps users book business travel and suffered during pandemic restrictions, saw “the first signs of recovery” and stabilizing performance in the quarter, Walldorf, Germany-based SAP said in a statement on Wednesday. Still, the business is unlikely to recover to its pre-pandemic levels this year, Chief Executive Officer Christian Klein said in an interview on Bloomberg TV.

Klein’s new initiative, called Rise, helps customers migrate their operations to the cloud to adopt a suite of new products that work faster and cost less to distribute and maintain. SAP has partnered with other software makers to integrate its products, and the company said the program won customers including semiconductor company Advanced Micro Devices Inc. and Etihad Airways since its launch in the first quarter.

Key Insights

  • “Results indicate SAP’s cloud transition continues to succeed,” analysts at Jefferies Financial Group Inc. said in a report.
  • Shares fell 3.9% to 116.78 euros at 9:12 a.m. in Frankfurt. The stock has risen 8.7% this year, recouping some losses following a plummet last October related to the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • Cloud revenue will rise to 9.3 billion euros ($11 billion) to 9.5 billion euros this year, raising the low end of SAP’s previous guidance from 9.2 billion euros.
  • SAP also said it sees operating profit of 7.95 billion euros to 8.25 billion euros in 2021, compared to its earlier forecast of 7.8 billion euros to 8.2 billion euros.
  • “These results demonstrate that our strategy’s not just working but creating distinct momentum in the market,” Klein said in a briefing with reporters.
  • Operating profit rose 3% in the second quarter, when adjusted for currency fluctuations, to 1.92 billion euros.
  • Second-quarter cloud revenue rose to 2.28 billion euros, in line with the 2.31 billion-euro average estimate from analysts in a Bloomberg survey.
  • SAP said that growth in its cloud backlog accelerated last quarter, rising 20% to 7.77 billion euros at constant currencies.
SAP Cloud Push Accelerates, Business Travel Begins Recovery

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  • Bank of America Corp. wrote in a report this month that the momentum for the group’s cloud business is set to accelerate and it upgraded the company to a buy recommendation from a sell.
  • The Rise offering has been a key driver of new business for SAP’s S/4 Hana cloud product for enterprise planning.
  • In April, SAP reported a self-described “blowout” quarter for its cloud business that included a 7% jump in the unit’s revenue.

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