Before SAP announced its acquisition of Emarsys, it announced something else: Its plan to spin out Qualtrics, meaning that the experience management company will go public. Which, let’s be honest, is clearly just SAP trying to make a virtue of necessity. The ERP company made a gamble when it acquired Qualtrics for 8 billion US dollars when original estimates put its market value at 4 to 5 billion US dollars, and it didn’t pay off. It takes guts to admit that, and I respect SAP CEO Christian Klein’s decision. Part of why I do is that it clearly wasn’t the customers’ idea. Klein’s decision is a rare instance where he and his management team didn’t rely on customers to point out weak spots – but there’s still a lot to be done in that direction.
As nice as it is to be listened to, SAP shouldn’t rely on customers to point out weak spots.