August 16, 2012
“In ten years, the whole energy industry will look completely different. First of all, utilities companies won’t be building these massive risk buffers into their prices anymore, so you’re going to be spending way less on your energy bill. Second, they’re already becoming more service-oriented. By 2020, I bet you’ll be buying your gas, electric, water, internet, phone, and television all from one service provider.”
This speculation was voiced by one startup presenter early in the morning on August 15, before the SAP Startup Forum in Berlin had even officially began. And it was indicative of the many conversations about the “future” of various industries – from retail to food to healthcare – that would take place throughout the rest of the day.
Thirty-five startups attended the event in Berlin to present their ideas for solving today’s business problems and explain how SAP HANA can help them to do so. It was the sixth such event to take place since March 7, when Palo Alto hosted the very first SAP Startup Forum (see the SAP.info article, “Up and Coming”). In the meantime, five other SAP Startup Forums have been held in Waterloo (Canada), Seattle, Tel Aviv, Beijing, and Bangalore, and there are several more still ahead.
The goal of these forums is to identify small companies that have great use cases for HANA, and provide them with the technological, financial, and expert support to bring their product to market. A panel of judges selects the most promising ideas from each event, and invites those companies to join the SAP Startup Focus program. There are currently 39 companies participating in the program, across several countries and numerous industries.
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