SAP merges North and South American sales

One of SAP America's top priorities will be to increase business in the U.S. public sector

Business application vendor SAP is merging its North American and Latin American business operations into one organization in a move aimed at increasing sales and market share.

The new unit, SAP Americas, will help the group "maximize resources and replicate best practices to serve customers across the entire region," said SAP spokesman Steve Bauer in a telephone interview on Thursday. "Many companies in the U.S. have subsidiaries in Latin America and vice versa, and with this new structure, we will be able to serve them more effectively."

SAP Americas will include the U.S. and Canada, as well as Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean, the Walldorf, Germany, vendor said in a statement earlier this week. It will be headed by Bill McDermott, previously in charge of the North American business.

Since McDermott joined SAP in October 2002, he has helped the company achieve 13 consecutive quarters of revenue growth in the North American market, the group's fastest-growing region, SAP said.

Fourth-quarter software license revenue in the U.S. is expected to rise 35 percent to €315 million ($380 million), the company said Tuesday.

Of SAP's more than 5,000 customers in the Americas, 3,000 are in North America and 2,000 in Latin America, according to Bauer.

One of McDermott's top priorities will be to increase SAP's business in the U.S. public sector, including the Department of Defense, federal civilian agencies, Homeland Security and local and state governments. Rand Blazer, former chief executive officer of BearingPoint, has been hired to manage this business.

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