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SAP: Mendocino On Schedule

Integrated into Office, Mendocino delivers an enterprise resource planning suite. SAP will deliver the Office 2007 version in sync with Microsoft's Office schedule.

SAP AG said Friday that Microsoft Corp.'s decision to hold off on delivering 2007 Microsoft Office to consumers until January will not affect the "general availability" roll out of Mendocino in June.

Microsoft said Friday the 2007 Microsoft Office package that includes Word processor, Excel spreadsheet and PowerPoint presentation software, will ship to business customers in October 2006. Consumers will have to wait until January 2007. Both products had been expected later this year.

Integrated into Office, Mendocino delivers features in enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications suite. Today those features are integrated into Microsoft Office 2003, but SAP has plans to add them to 2007 Microsoft Office, too.

"We will add support for Office 2007, and we're targeting to remain in sync with the Microsoft's release," said Sharada Achanta, senior director solution marketing at SAP. "We don’t expect any impact to businesses."

The pre-release for Mendocino shipped in December to 50 customers. The second pre-release with upgrades from initial feedback from customers will ship to the same customers in April.

"The pieces in Mendocino that would affect businesses are features, such as reporting and tracking, as well as recording office time and attendance, that are not offered in the consumer edition," Ray Wang, senior analyst for enterprise applications at Forrester Research Inc. "These features are a small piece of Office 2007."

Features include time and lead management, providing an ability to remain in Microsoft Outlook and access mySAP ERP backend systems.

The 2007 Microsoft Office edition "remains on track for availability to business customers through volume licensing by October 2006, with a public Beta 2 this spring," said Microsoft spokeswoman Alison Dwiggins in an e-mail. "We have, however, decided to coordinate with Windows Vista to hit retail store shelves and the original equipment manufacturer channel in January 2007."

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