SAP’s Licensing Time-Bomb
Software giant’s victory in “indirect use” case is cause for concern for companies worldwide.
On February 16, 2017, the High Court of Justice in the United Kingdom held that Diageo plc, a global drinks company, was liable for unauthorized use of SAP software as a result of failing to secure “Named User” licenses for its customers and sales representatives who used certain third party applications running on a Salesforce platform that accessed and exchanged data with SAP systems. While the decision does not have direct application outside the United Kingdom and may be appealed by Diageo, it is an important win by SAP and a significant cause for concern for companies licensing SAP software. The decision may embolden SAP to be even more aggressive in attempting to extract additional license and support fees from customers—which could potentially run into tens of millions of dollars for many companies—based on alleged “indirect” uses of SAP software. We encourage licensees of SAP software to get in front of this issue by undertaking an assessment of whether they are at risk for claims of indirect use by SAP.
To read the full alert on the Pillsbury site click here…