The lawsuit filed by Waste Management against SAP in March over what the trash-disposal company claims was a botched ERP implementation is growing increasingly rancorous, with accusations of withheld information and deliberate foot-dragging.
In addition, the systems integrator Deloitte Consulting has become caught up in the suit, though not as an official party.
[ See earlier developments in this story: "Waste Management sues SAP over ERP implementation" and "Update: SAP files counterclaim against Waste Management" ]
In a filing in Harris County, Texas District Court earlier this month, SAP asked the court to delay the trial until February 2010 due to the complexity of the case. The vendor also alleges Waste Management has not behaved in good faith during the discovery process.
"Rather than focusing on producing the most relevant documents first, Waste Management appears to have taken the opposite approach," SAP said.
While Waste Management's production "has been voluminous, most of those documents -- such as customer invoices, office building sign-in sheets, and customer addresses -- relate generally to its business operations and not specifically to the purchase or implementation of the software at issue in this suit."
SAP also wants the court to delay the depositions of a number of SAP employees.
"The only possible explanation for Waste Management's refusal to produce the documents on which it intends to rely at the depositions -- or, for that matter, for seeking to depose key witnesses before producing its own documents -- is that it hopes to 'surprise' SAP's witnesses with documents they have never seen, or have not seen in years and have long forgotten," the filing alleges.
Meanwhile, SAP has produced "hundreds of thousands of pages of documents, including e-mails and what Defendants believe are most of the critical documents," SAP said.
But a response filed by Waste Management states "SAP has sought to delay the case at every turn," and that trial should begin in April 2009.
"These types of lawsuits, arising from defective software and failed implementation, are routine for SAP," Waste Management said. "There are standard motions it files and it uses the same types of expert witnesses. ... There is no reason the case cannot be discovered and tried in 2009."
SAP's assertions regarding Waste Management's conduct during discovery are "baseless," the filing adds. "Waste Management has made 10 separate productions of 'substantive' information to SAP totaling 947,304 pages (compared to SAP's production of approximately 308,000 pages)."
The documents include issue and resolution logs "addressing specific issues with the programming, conversion and implementation of SAP Waste & Recycling software," the filing states.
SAP has also "refused to present witnesses for deposition, has failed to substantively answer interrogatories, and has lodged boilerplate objections to discovery that it refuses to withdraw," Waste Management said.