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LAS VEGAS — SAP is making inroads in the open source world. The software heavyweight announced today at the SAP TechEd 2017 conference that it is joining the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) as a Platinum member and the Open API Initiative (OAI).  SAP CTO Bjoern Goerke will join the CNCF governing board, and the company said it will be a major contributor to the group.

Both CNCF and OAI are part of the Linux Foundation. CNCF is home to Kubernetes, the open source project that acts as an orchestration layer for containers. OAI is focused on creating, evolving, and promoting a vendor neutral description format for ReST APIs. ReST stands for Representational State Transfer, an architectural style for designing networked applications.

According to Dan Lahl, vice president, product marketing at SAP, the company is embracing open source as a way to add more flexibility for its enterprise customers and spur more innovation.

Today’s announcements follows the company’s news earlier this year that its SAP Cloud Platform was available on other public clouds via the Cloud Foundry open source platform-as-a-service (PaaS). Cloud Foundry allows companies to deploy applications to multiple cloud platforms, both private and public, as well as on bare-metal servers, with no changes to the application.

Lahl said that SAP believes its alliance with Cloud Foundry and its membership with CNCF will encourage the two groups to work together. “We’re on the board and we want to help them do that,” Lahl said.

During the keynote, SAP’s Goerke also touted the company’s work with Mendix, which makes an application platform for low-code apps. SAP will resell the Mendix platform to its customers so they can build custom apps on SAP’s Cloud platform quickly and easily. Hans de Visser, VP of marketing and strategic alliances at Mendix, said that both companies are Cloud Foundry members and active contributors. He added that because SAP has Cloud Foundry, Mendix can deploy applications easily across both.

SAP Cloud on GCP

SAP also announced that its SAP Cloud Platform is available on Google Cloud Platform (GCP). Goerke said that it is available in beta and will provide enterprises with better regional coverage. The news drew applause from the 6,000 or so in attendance at the SAP TechEd 2017 conference.

Goerke said the company is embracing the cloud-native technology because it believes it will make cloud adoption faster and easier for customers.

The company also is continuing to invest in its own infrastructure and expand its data centers. SAP said it will open new data centers in Toronto and Moscow and its SAP Cloud Platform will also be available in the Amazon Web Services data center in Sao Paolo, Brazil, beginning in the fourth quarter.

Photo: At SAP TechEd 2017’s keynote address, CTO Bjoern Goerke and other team members used a Star Trek theme to announce the latest product updates. 

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