SAP has responded to the prevailing nervousness in corporate IT and travel markets by scrapping this year's annual Sapphire event and replacing it with two seperate e-business events targetting clustered regional communities.
The German ERP vendor has confirmed a news report in FT-Deutschland that the prestige Sapphire forum will be replaced this year and every other year by more focussed events in Eastern and Western Europe. SAP says that the move is in response to feedback suggesting European CIOs and CFOs are fighting shy of long business trips.
News of the decision adds to the nervousness about the underlying European business climate and implications for IT spending plans.
Sixty per cent of senior executives in European technology companies surveyed by the Eurocom PR network rank a war in Iraq amongst the top three most serious threats to recovery in the IT market. Over a quarter (26%) rank it as the number one threat.
The study covered 147 senior executives in technology companies in 12 countries in Europe including Ireland as well as in Middle East and South Africa.