“After creating a market for his “new to the world” product and a significant partnership with the German-based SAP, Sridhar Tayur had an opportunity to take the partnership with SAP to another level by establishing a reseller arrangement, available to only a dozen or so of SAP's elite partners—widely considered in the enterprise software industry as a dream come true for technology entrepreneurs.
Suitable for use in MBA, EMBA, and GEMBA programs, this case offers the opportunity to focus decision making on several key marketing and sales issues. Should Tayur sign a deal with SAP, thereby handing significant control of the messaging and positioning of SmartOps to a global giant? How reliant on SAP did he really want to get? Would signing the deal make losing control of his company more likely and alienate prospects who were not fans of SAP? What would not doing the deal mean for the relationship with SAP? Would SAP go down the reseller route with a competitor? What exactly was a good reseller contract, and was it possible for a company as small as SmartOps to make the agreement a win-win?”
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