SAP acquires Sybase

May 16, 2010

201005151759.jpg + 201005151800.jpg This week SAP announced intentions to acquire Sybase in a deal that would be worth around $5.8B. Sybase, once a contender in the database wars of the 1990’s, did about $1.2B last year, with over half of that revenue in the RDBMS market, placing them forth in database revenue share. That’s not really that telling though, the RDBMS market is really consolidated in 3 vendors, Oracle, IBM and Microsoft, who together make up over 85% of total sales. The rest of the market is divided among 25+ vendors with Sybase holding about 3.2% of the total market share. Today SAP customers run on the big 3, with Oracle holding the largest share in the customer base by a good margin. In fact SAP is rumored to be the largest reseller of Oracle databases. Sybase has 0 share, SAP does not run on Sybase (there’s a whole story behind that statement, which in fact contributed greatly to Oracle’s win in the database wars but I’ll leave that for another time).

So why then, would SAP be interested in Sybase? In a recent briefing with the new SAP co-CEO’s they shared their new strategy for the company. As a part of that strategy (explained in more detail here), three pillars were laid out: On demand, .