Think Oracle’s winning bid for Retek over SAP didn’t rattle the No. 1
applications maker’s cage? Think again.
Reinforcing that the retail space is a fertile battleground for selling
merchants’ applications, German giant SAP today agreed to buy privately held
Khimetrics for an undisclosed sum.
Scottsdale, Ariz.-based Khimetrics makes Java-based software that allows
retailers to analyze how to price and position items, install sales
strategies to keep customers for the long haul and forecast profitability.
While retail is the primary focus of the deal, SAP said it will use
Khimetrics’ assets in its financial services and consumer products
portfolios. SAP will also acquire a customer base that includes Lowe’s,
7-Eleven, Sterling Jewelers and Big Y Foods.
The acquisition is expected to be completed in January 2006. SAP intends to
keep the Khimetrics Scottsdale office and staff of 130 workers.
The bid comes two months after SAP’s acquisition of point-of-sale software maker Triversity, which helps computers in
retail stores execute purchases.
Two buys in the same space so close together highlight just how serious the
applications leader is about the retail space after losing
Retek to Oracle earlier this year.
“Recognizing the growing market opportunity of providing standard software
to retailers, SAP has been making strategic investments in key retail
functionalities to enhance its retail offering,” SAP said in a statement.
Both SAP and Oracle believe customers are moving away from building
proprietary software in-house to standardized software that will work with
software from multiple vendors.
Oracle President Chuck Phillips confirmed this trend in a recent meeting with financial analysts in New York.
Analysts peg the retail software market as a multi-billion-dollar
opportunity, and despite Oracle’s Retek coup, SAP said more than 2,900
retailers worldwide use its software.