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Originally posted on SAP Analytics blog. Reposted with permission.

So you wanted to be in Las Vegas for the co-located Financials 2015 and GRC 2015 events (produced by SAPinsider, March 17-20, 2015), but for whatever reason you didn’t get the chance? Well, you missed something for sure – but not all of it. I bring you some highlights which you can still enjoy and experience after the event.

Location – A Cut Above

The Wynn Las Vegas was simply spectacular – not just for a European like me. If the U.S. border patrol welcomes you by saying “The Wynn is the best hotel in town,” you probably know that you made a good choice. In fact, since the SAPinsider team made that choice for me, I would like to thank you guys for choosing the proper location to host the conference. Not being onsite at the Wynn yourself is one of the few things you can’t make up for. Maybe some of my photos will compensate?

Standing Room Only Keynote by Thack Brown

thack.brown, general manager and global head of LoB Finance at SAP, delivered a compelling keynote address titled “Simplifying Finance in an Increasingly Complex World.” He shared SAP’s vision of the modern finance department and how SAP Simple Finance helps CFOs and finance leaders to start their journey to business transformation with real-time finance processes. You can watch the keynote in full length (78 minutes).

Thought Leaders Panel with Celina Rogers and Bill McNee

Thought leaders Celina Rogers, vice president and editorial director at CFO Publishing, and Bill McNee, president and CEO of Saugatuck Technology, joined Thack for a panel discussion looking at the challenges and opportunities CFOs face today – and how SAP Simple Finance offers the agility and capabilities needed to address them. You can follow the panel discussion as part of the keynote replay (between 14:20-33:00).

   SAPinsider Thought Leaders Keynote Panel: Thack Brown, Celina Rogers, Bill McNee

SAP Demos and SAP Cash Management powered by SAP HANA Announcement

Numerous demos were of course shown during many of the 200+ sessions. The ones you can easily recap, are the ones from the keynote. PS: This also includes the new SAP Cash Management powered by SAP HANA, which was launched officially at the event.

   SAP Cash Management powered by SAP HANA demo by Christian Mnich.

Interviews with Customers, Partners, and SAP Experts

Meeting new people and networking with them is another thing I can’t compensate for. However, I sat down (or kept standing) with some of them – including SAP customers, partners and SAP experts – to record short video interviews. You can watch them on YouTube and thus e-meet some awesome people!

Here are some examples to give you an idea:

Celina Rogers, VP and editorial director at CFO Publishing, sat down with henner.schliebs, head of finance audience marketing at SAP. She outlines the exciting opportunity for finance to transition from a traditional support function to strategic, forward-looking value-add activities and the evolving role of IT.

jochen.thierer, head of development and product management for GRC applications at SAP, shares his event impressions, speaks on the strategy for future SAP GRC products, and explains how they fit into SAP Simple Finance.

Anders Reinhardt, head of global business intelligence within the VELUX Group, to reflects on a recent beyond-budgeting project that he led, and explains SAP HANA in nontechnical, plain English.

thack.brown, general manager and global head of LoB finance at SAP, shares his perspective on how taking finance real-time with SAP Simple Finance is resonating big with the audience and what customers can expect in 2015 in regards to SAP Simple Finance.

Social Media Buzz

The rumor that the SAPinsider GRC 2015 and Financials 2015 events aren’t as social as the SAPinsider BI ... didn’t prove to be true! Many people joined in the social media buzz – more than in any Financials or GRC event before. More than 4,000 Tweets were counted for both #Financials2015 and #GRC2015 hashtags through day 4 (March 20, 2015) alone with approximately 600 unique contributors. And the buzz still continues – on Twitter and the Analytics from SAP Facebook page (check out the photo album!). Why don’t you have a look yourself and join the conversation? #Financials2015 / #GRC2015.

Blog Posts – There's Plenty to Read

Plenty of blog posts, written prior, during or post the event, are available for you to dig deeper into those topics that interest you most. Pick your favorites!

New SAP Simple Finance Heroes

Apart from all serious business, we actually had some fun at the conference, too! Besides the official photo contest, we gave attendees the opportunity to join the growing number of “Simple Finance Heroes” – by grabbing a t-shirt at the SAP booth and sharing a photo publicly. Four little call-to-action tweets resulted in nine photos, six personal “I’m proud to wear SAP #SimpleFinance because …” quotes and 110 earned mentions (retweets or favorites) on Twitter. People enjoyed it – and we’ve proven the fact that even something like Finance can become wearable (watch out, Apple!).

Some of the SAP-Simple-Finance-Hero Tweets during the conference:

Your Next Chance: SAPinsider Financials2015/GRC2015 in Nice

So you missed the Financials/GRC 2015 conference in Las Vegas? Despite this little recap and the available materials online (which I hope you enjoyed), you have a unique chance to experience a similar event in Nice, France, June 16-18: Financials 2015 and GRC 2015 will be co-located with BI 2015, HANA 2015, and HR 2015. Registration at one conference admits you to all five at no additional cost. An Early Bird discount is available until April 17, so register now!

Should you miss the event onsite, the online conversation will continue for sure – right at your fingertips! #Financials2015 / #GRC2015.

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