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SAP Advanced Event Mesh vs Apache Kafka

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Hi Experts,

Currently we have SAP SRM, S/4 HANA backend system, non SAP applications have interfaces with Supplier where we are using SAP PO as middle ware.

As part of digitalisation, For a few existing interfaces we are planning to migrate and use Event Driven Architecture, Remaining all should be migrated to SAP Integration Suite.

For interfaces where Event Driven Architecture should be used we have to choose which tool should we go for? SAP advanced Event Mesh(AEM) or Apache Kafka? Also will SAP Advanced Mesh will be part of SAP Integration Suite in future? No additional license required for SAP AEM when we have SAP Integration Suite already?

now we have 2 questions to identify which will be best fit:

1. Cost is one thing we need to compare between the two.

2. The other question is, how difficult is it (for us and for the partner system) to connect to Kafka, and how much know how do we need to build up? Is Apache Kafka complex than SAP Advanced Event Mesh?

I learnt there is 3rd party add on(for example ASAPIO) to connect to ABAP to SAP Event Mesh.

Is there any advantage of using ASAPIO rather than PI/PO or CPI to connect ABAP to Event Mesh?

What are drawbacks if we use PI/PO or CPI instead of ASAPIO? Is using PI/PO or CPI in place of this ASAPIO is not state of art technology or recommended for EDA architecture?

Please suggest regarding the same, Thank you!



Active Participant
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Those are quite a bunch of different questions. I would suggest creating multiple questions here to get proper responses for each of them.

Also, I think a few more details are needed to answer #1 and #2. What amount of event bandwidth do you expect? How many network zones and components are we talking about? How familiar is your team with technologies like Kafka?

The key benefit of a solution like the SAP Advanced Event Mesh (AEM) is that it handles a lot of the complexity that comes with event broker systems like Kafka for you. And abstracts it away behind easy-to-use integration interfaces.

Of course that comes with not having as much flexibility as going directly with Kafka. On the other hand, if your team does not have a lot of experience with event broker technology the Event Mesh might be the right choice to start with. As it also supports multiple event consumer clients besides only Kafka clients.

Active Contributor

1. Very soon, Event Mesh will be part of SAP IS licensing.

2. You can not integrate any SAP product with a 3rd party event framework, without Event Mesh. It is mandatory. From EM, you can integrate Kafka or anything else.

3. SAP IS is the future. I would not depend on 3rd party add-ons for something that SAP provides out of the box.

4. Stop using PI/PO as much as you can and move your new development to SAP IS

Product and Topic Expert
Product and Topic Expert

Lots of questions, some feedback already by Sebastian and Vijay. Let me shed some more light on this. I'm afraid it will be just some light. Some of these questions simply cannot be answered in short:

1. AEM is an optional component to SAP Integration Suite. You can get it stand alone as well. It is not included in standard Integration Suite.

2. AEM and Kafka are based on different concepts. AEM is an event broker while Kafka is an event log. In short, AEM is an event network while Kafka is more of an event database. Or in different wording, AEM is the nervous system of the enterprise. Quite often customers use both in combination. Typically with AEM as the main mesh with Kafka or Confluent as sub mesh. You could see this as a layered approach as well where Kafka logs the events that AEM as nervous system distributes.

3. Sebastian has already said it: comparing AEM to Kafka is slightly unfair. Kafka you have to operate yourself and this tends to get expensive, AEM facilitates a lot of tasks for you and makes your life easier. So if you want to compare it, you need to compare AEM to Confluent.

4. Beyond the comparison of infrastructure, and this is what event brokers are, it is important to look at the content: events. In this area there is a clear advantage for AEM on the horizon. AEM will be the second native event broker for S/4HANA in October (currently events are only supplied to SAP Event Mesh directly) and its integration into the SAP ecosystem will be a major benefit. Just to make clear why this is important: S/4 currently provides 500+ standard events and in future you will be able to adjust these to your needs. So content will be a major differentiator.

As said, it's a little challenging to answer your questions in just a few lines. You might have to dig into things a little deeper yourself. Here's some reading material that might help you:

SAP's Event-Driven Ecosystem

SAP Integration Suite, advanced event mesh

AEM and EM

Comparison AEM vs Kafka

Hope this helps to get you started and enjoy the reads. Event-driven architectures are a fascinating topic.



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