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With this blog, I would like to share what you may expect from the Localization team in 2019. The journey we started together at the time we met at the Localization Summit 2015 moves forward. Several KPIs show clearly the ecosystem adoption for SAP ByD as cloud erp for midsize business and more customers run everyday operations in several countries.  Check details in this blog.

In the end, let’s simply remind, the Localization strategy keeps the same track as set. It combines the SAP ByD compliance on delivered countries- this year adding Israel- plus our partners’ country implementation effort on supporting customers in their subsidiaries roll-out with SAP technology (e.g. Cloud Applications Studio) and services.

But let me add some localization 2018 indicators (you can compare with 2017 figures reported in my blog ).

As Rainer Zinow indicated in his SAP ByD 2018 and 2019 year-end review video,  “the really interesting numbers reflect ByD is being used in 144 countries around the world, which is a testament ByD is a globalized solution so that customers and partners can build own country versions (namely country add-ons)”. Thus, customers do not completely need to rely on us for delivery, but can use existing services and technology, for instance the Localization Toolkit, to execute their own subsidiaries roll-out plans.

In the same line, partners in 2018 have increased customer choice to go for new countries. A total of 72 country versions supported by partners adding to our country list are available at SAP JAM . It enhances the current 20 SAP delivered countries, 19 Pre-localized and 118 Tax basic countries (see picture below). Today, more than 1000 companies run ByD in non-localized countries, among those are Singapore, UAE, Thailand, Colombia or Sweden, which are developing faster having strong partner support. Finally, in several cases, our ecosystem collaborated and developed certain specific local requirements (e.g. e-invoice for Italy, Intrastat for EU countries, Eco Tax for France, Payroll for Saudi Arabia or specific country banks statements and payments integration) that clearly add value and enhance our current portfolio.

In the end, it brings me back to our picture of a combined strategy, which considers SAP, its technology, and services plus Partner and Customer extensions.

These facts above set the conditions for our 2019 main investment areas in Localization as indicated in our Roadmap for 2019 . During 2019, our localization outlook follows the product strategy fundamental to remain compliant from a global perspective (Disclaimer: All forward-looking statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations😞

  • Regular maintenance and legal change management for our delivered country versions

Details on country versions and localization features are updated in every release. Check the updates on globalization capabilities at sap.com (Europe; Asia-Pacific-Japan, Americas and Africa and Middle East) or simply check the “What’s new” section at the Help portal.

This year, we will also complete the current asset, showing pre-localized countries available content in the system for your consideration. We are working to ease country-specific features access (starting with 1902)  directly at the new help.sap.com. Check the country site. Once the documentation effort is completed, we may replace the country specific features delivered as pdf formats in sap.com.

  • Existing country version enhancements

As in the past, some countries require enhancements, which will be applied for instance in Italy, England( Brexit impact), India, Mexico, China or Switzerland. Specific details can be discussed with our Localization Product Managers responsible for those countries. Regular updates are available at our product roadmap.

  • New countries, Go-To- Market, and Partner Enablement

I would like to highlight our actions with two major countries first. Starting with 1902, Israel is declared available for any customers and partners. In addition, requested country features will be shipped in subsequent releases as indicated in the roadmap (e.g. SHAAM interface, Form 6111 or Asset Accounting reports).

South Korea is planned to leave the controlled availability status by 1908, becoming visible as pre-localized country in the system. Country features can be checked as part of the Pre-localized countries asset published at sap.com. If you need to request South Korea system, please proceed as documented in our Knowledge Base Article

In the continuous effort to evolve our country coverage with the GTM leadership team, we may add Arabic as new language – aiming 1908- to our current 12 languages supported. Partners have created great value in the MENA region with country add-ons, and the Arabic language will accelerate product acceptance. We will also evaluate any option to move fast growing Tax basic countries (e.g. Taiwan) to a pre-localized category, as this step could add customer value in combination to a country version developed by partners.

Also, this year we will increase our Partner enablement and trainings approach. For instance, we are working to: increase the knowledge transfer sessions as part of the on-site trainings, update the Cloud Application Studio available training in openSAP (by end of the year), deliver additional educational videos on the “how to” create content related to localization, position the most relevant localization apps, or develop additional guides about “how to implement a country” in your reference systems.

  • Additional Localization services relevant for implementations in non-localized countries

Again, during 2019, we will push forward some of the new ideas collected via the Customer Influence Portal, which got the most votes and were tagged as relevant for the Localization Toolkit.

In the same context, we will continue with our regular effort to transfer knowledge about this toolkit with additional “How to session (e.g. How to create Forms ) or updated documentation.

Special attention will be put at the Language Adaptation Tool (LAT), which as by 1902 is declared available. Recorded session of our win bigger Webinar" announcing LAT at Partner Edge is available for you. Additional documentation and details can be accessed via the blog. Interesting to mention, during a limited period of time, we will take advantage of the LAT, integrated with Translation Hub Service. (SAP translation HUB and might be subject for further licensing in the future)

Last but not least, we continue the evaluation of the technology and execution of scenarios related to Business to Government (B2G) scenarios taking advantage of effort started with the e-invoice  integration with public sector,  that would enhance our flexibility capabilities in SAP ByD.

Finally, I would like to remind the ByD Community to check regularly the channels we support in our roll-out and interact with our experts in our community: