Jim Hagemann Snabe

SAP's culture of innovation

May 3, 2011: 10:48 AM ET

Mobile, cloud, memory -- the three foundations of enterprise computing's present and future. SAP's new co-CEOs want to be forceful players in them all.

Jim Hagermann Snabe

Jim Hagemann Snabe. Image by Gregor Wolf via Flickr

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FORTUNE -- SAP may be the world's largest enterprise software maker, but it suffers from a reputation of being slow and bureaucratic. That's why last year new management was brought in to help simplify the business and spur a culture of innovation. Co-chief executive officers Jim Hagemann Snabe and Bill McDermott have pledged to accelerate product releases and cut internal red tape. But their efforts haven't paid off for investors quite yet. Last Thursday the German company announced its operating profit rose 26% in the first quarter, failing to meet analysts' estimates and sending SAP's (SAP) stock down. At the same time, the company reiterated its forecast for full-year revenue to rise by 10% to 14%. I caught up with co-CEO Snabe at SAP's Palo Alto offices to find out how a focus on new technologies could help the company grow.

Fortune: You talk about three categories of innovation at SAP. What are they? More

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