SAP displayed next-gen technologies with the launch of the SAP Next-Gen program at the company’s new offices in the Hudson Yards development in New York.
The SAP Next-Gen program and the innovation center are the outgrowth of SAP’s relationships with universities as a source of talent and innovation, according to Ann Rosenberg, SAP vice president and head of SAP Next-Gen Labs.
“A couple of years ago SAP decided that you don’t just go to universities to recruit talent, you go for crowdsourcing, to do research, to work with the minds of young people,” Rosenberg said. “Universities are becoming a kind of consultancies for companies because the way they use technologies, and all the next-gen technologies we’ve seen today — blockchain, machine learning, IoT, virtual reality, 3D printing — are really been built or defined by universities or by a startup out of a university. So the ideas start there and the way they work with technology is a different way than older generations, and this is something that companies have begun to recognize in a big way.”
The SAP Next-Gen program won’t be limited to New York City, Rosenberg said, and will offer a variety of programs like incubator tours and startup matchmaking services in tech “innovation belts” like Silicon Valley.
“There are so many tech communities around the world and when you engage there you get incredible knowledge,” Rosenberg said. “We also do dedicated boot camps within SAP disruptive technologies, so if you are in a financial service you can find out what you can do with blockchain or machine learning. That’s where we get academia, startups, thought leaders from SAP to come and speak.”
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