SAP, Europe’s largest software company, has not revealed that it has a personal connection to the millionaire chair and the newly released joint venture of several million euros from the largest shareholder.
The Haso Plattner Foundation, a charitable organization founded by the co-founder of the software giant, is a Munich-based private equity firm called Dedic, as well as a secret investor in the spinout of SAP’s financial services business.
These revelations have raised questions about the administration and influence of Silicon Valley’s software giants on Europe’s Northern Europe, SAP, where he has been in charge since 2003, playing an executive role.
In April, SAP said it had formed a “strategic partnership” with Dedek to reinforce innovation in its financial services product portfolio. SAP said the joint venture would have a 20 per cent stake and Dedik would invest € 500 million.
However, the Frankfurt and New York-listed b 1 billion market cap company did not disclose the role of the Platter Foundation and other financial connections between Platner and Dedek.
SAP confirmed that the Platner Foundation was a joint venture investor in response to a question from the Financial Times, but stressed that its role was as a “passive investor behind Dedek”. Handles Blatt first spoke about the role of the foundation before Tuesday.
“The foundation decides on its own investment and all the profits of the foundation are exclusively for non-profit and charitable purposes. Haso Platner himself did not play a role in the deal, “said SAP.
Asked why the foundation’s involvement was not disclosed, SAP said it held a media briefing last month, which included an FT reporter, and that: “In that pre-briefing, we answered all the questions directed at SAP and Dedik.” .
The company added that it had “explored various strategic options with other third parties and conducted thorough market research before determining whether Dedic was the best match for the new venture”.
Didik said: “As a matter of policy, we do not comment on our co-investors. Regarding the transaction with SAP, for the sake of clarity we can confirm that Mr. Platter is not an investor, so it has no effect and is not a beneficiary. “The firm added:” All of our co-investors are just passive. “
A spokesman for Platner said: “It has no effect [Hasso Plattner] Foundation; Nor in any executive or supervisory role, and “added:” HPF has no control as a passive investor and has no business involvement. “
The Platner Foundation website describes Platner as his “strategic advisor in all areas of business” and helps his wife and daughters approve new projects and assist in strategic decisions.
Plattner, 77, 19 helped find SAP in 1972 and is its largest single shareholder with almost the largest percentage of shareholders. He also owns the San Jose Sharks, an American ice hockey team, with a net worth of 9 9 billion, according to Forbes.
In a 2018 Dedic presentation, the private equity firm indicated that Platner’s family office is its sole external co-investor.
“We invest our own capital and in the family office of our co-investor Hasso Platner Capital, the founder of SAP,” said the German-language presentation seen by FT.
Didik’s deals include a 2017 investment in a consultancy targeting SAP customers called Contvista. Its co-investors included Platner’s daughter and a number of Platter’s associates, an entity owned by Rowen Westfall, who was the head of his family’s office, according to publicly available company records.
At its annual meeting on Wednesday, SAP shareholders were ready to vote on Westfall’s appointment to the company’s oversight board.
Two more diversified investments in 2019 include Platter’s family office entity, FOP Co-Investment, as well as Westfall Entity, Araken Ventures, as co-investors.
SAP said neither Platter nor Westfall were co-investors.
The Hasso Platter Foundation’s involvement in the joint venture could be traced back to February, when it appeared at the time of filing a joint venture with an entity controlled by Dedek’s managing partner Matthias Toman. No further details were included in the brief notice.
Last month, the SAP / DEDIC joint venture entity, owned by the same toman entity, notified its competitor authorities of the revenue deducted from the SAP since the February notice.
SAP’s existing financial services activities are being transferred to the joint venture, with software giant financial services-specific products, hundreds of employees and contributing as part of the joint venture management team.
Luca Music, SAP’s chief financial officer, told reporters last month that the initiative, which will be SAP branded, would be a “speedboat” that could operate faster and more flexibly than the larger SAP group. However he acknowledged that their numbers were not enough to defeat Dedik’s side, but described him as “an entity you can’t immediately get acquainted with.”