News | Arvato Group | Gütersloh, 02/04/2022

SAP And Arvato Systems Announce Partnership

The internationally active business software provider SAP and the internationally active IT specialist Arvato Systems have announced the kickoff for the first sovereign cloud platform for the public sector in Germany. Together, they will establish a completely new German company. In addition to SAP, Arvato Systems will become a shareholder and will also take over operations.

SAP, one of the leading international providers of business process management software, and the internationally active IT specialist Arvato Systems have announced their intent to invest in a sovereign cloud platform for the public sector in Germany. The new cloud infrastructure is designed to meet the unique national requirements set out in the German cloud strategy, as Arvato Systems announced. There will be no network dependencies on systems outside Germany, and the independent operation of all services is ensured. All data will be processed and stored in Germany, and all services will be delivered from within Germany.

A completely new company is to be established to provide a sovereign cloud for the public sector in Germany. The aim of the new company is to drive digital transformation in Germany. In addition to SAP, the plan is for Arvato Systems to also become a shareholder and to take over operations. According to the companies, the offering will be based on the broadly adopted Microsoft Azure platform and related Microsoft services, including cutting-edge collaboration and productivity solutions of Microsoft 365 along with industry-leading SAP business applications and tools. Approved third-party providers can also offer their applications on the platform. The new company’s sovereign cloud will provide a broad catalog of digital solutions to support the digitalization efforts of the German government to accelerate the use of cloud technology in the German public sector and will meet the strict requirements put in place by the Bundesamt für Sicherheit in der Informationstechnik (BSI). Another advantage of the open platform is that the offering of the new company will be a vendor-neutral stack based on Microsoft’s secure cloud technology, and it will offer full interoperability with other tools. With that, the infrastructure can support a variety of cloud solutions from independent vendors, including open source software. Already today, 60 percent of the workloads on Azure are Linux-based.  

“Breakthrough approach for cloud-based innovation”

The new offering is designed to meet the technical, operational and legal sovereignty requirements of the German government. It will be governed by German law and address the data sovereignty needs of the German public sector. Additionally, the new company will be the sole owner of the cloud infrastructure. Furthermore, the plan is for the technical operation to be taken over by Arvato Systems as an experienced infrastructure operator. The infrastructure will be strictly separated from Microsoft’s global data center infrastructure and the existing public cloud infrastructure in Germany.  

“This partnership represents a breakthrough approach for cloud-based innovation,” said Christian Klein, CEO SAP SE. “Together we'll provide a unique solution that not only meets the highest standards of cloud-based technology but also meets the strictest requirements of data sovereignty. This one-of-a-kind collaboration unlocks the potential of digital transformation for the German government and beyond.” Matthias Moeller, CEO of the Arvato Systems Group and CIO of Bertelsmann, said: “We are very pleased about the expansion of our partnership and the plans with SAP. At Arvato Systems, we have been supporting large infrastructures, including those in the public sector, for many years and understand their unique requirements. The intended partnership offers the best outcome from various perspectives: to use the best available technology and secure German sovereignty interests while accelerating digitalization for citizens and employees alike.”

“As digital technology continues to rapidly transform work and life, we have a critical opportunity to ensure these advancements benefit people and organizations everywhere, including in Germany,” said Satya Nadella, Chairman and CEO, Microsoft. “Together with SAP and Arvato Systems, we will create a cloud platform that meets the requirements of the German public sector to help drive digital transformation across the country.”