Claus Andresen : Riding The SEA Of Digital Disruptions!

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SAP believes that family businesses in Southeast Asia have the potential to disrupt industries and drive economic growth, but they need to embrace digital innovations. Claus Andresen of SAP Southeast Asia explains why, with the help of a new study by The Economist Intelligence Unit.

Claus Andresen : Riding The SEA Of Digital Disruptions!


Family Businesses In Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia (is a high-growth region, where family businesses make up a significant proportion of SMEs. These family businesses are aware of the rapid change in technology and markets, and these are impacting their outlook and strategies.

In a new SAP-sponsored study by The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), Southeast Asian family businesses ranked the pace of technological change as their foremost area of concern – one that may present the most significant threat to their growth over the next three years.


Q&A With Claus Andresen

At the of the SAP Leonardo briefings at the new SAP Leonardo Center Singapore, we sat down with Claus Andresen, President and Managing Director of SAP Southeast Asia, to talk about the new study, and importance of digital innovation to these family businesses.

“The landscape and dynamics of family businesses in Southeast Asia is unique, with many of them still being in the first or second generation. Given their small or medium sizes, these businesses have the competitive advantage of being agile and nimble, which put them in a better position to adapt to the rapid pace of change in the market,” said Claus Andresen.

“When we look at the broader SME segment in Southeast Asia, SMEs account for between 95 to 99 percent of establishments across ASEAN, contributing massively to the GDP. This may put them in prime position to drive disruptions across industries and economic growth across the region. But to do this, these organisations should first and foremost embrace digital innovations and integrate digital technologies into their overall strategy.”


The EIU Study On Family Businesses In Southeast Asia

The EIU study, called “Planning for Prosperity: Assessing Family Business Future-Readiness in South and Southeast Asia“, is based on a survey of 300 family business executives across eight countries in the APAC region – Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Thailand.

According to Michael Gold, EIU Editor, “Executives in Southeast Asia show less confidence in their abilities to meet future challenges than their peers in South Asia. In order for family businesses in this fast-changing region to keep up, they will need to adapt to new technological developments and modernise their way of thinking to bring their businesses into the 21st century. Otherwise, the next generation may not throw in their chips with their parents’ companies.”

Despite feeling the pressure from the emergence of new technologies, the executives in the study are strongly confident of their organisations’ readiness to utilise new technologies like :

  • data analytics : 67%
  • machine learning : 62.3%
  • automation : 65.7%
  • cloud computing : 63.7%


SAP Partner-Packaged Solution For SMEs

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To support the digital innovation of SMEs in Southeast Asia, SAP announced the availability of SAP-qualified partner-packaged solutions for SAP Leonardo.

These are fixed-scope packaged solutions that offer predictable prices, and are structured to provide a fast return on investment.

  • Packages based on SAP software together with a partner’s services and intellectual property, with a fixed scope and a fixed price,
  • A rigorous qualification process, with validation of the partners’ ability to deliver,

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