The application software enterprise market is facing a fundamental change from onpremises software products to cloud-installed services based on ‘pay-per-use’ subscriptions. We propose a novel conceptual framework to analyze this transformation from an ecosystem perspective. Through a case study of SAP, we demonstrate that the cloud platform ecosystem differs from the on-premises software product ecosystem, with changed roles, responsibilities, patterns, and key stakeholder relationships. The findings suggest that the traditional product platform ecosystem has evolved in three directions: 1) the structures of partner ecosystems are changing, with partners and platform leaders forming a new micro-ecosystem as a basic unit to interact with customers; 2) the role and function of the traditional distribution channel have been eroded and weakened; and 3) the growing importance of platforms has changed the value relationships amongst stakeholders. Based on these findings, we discuss the managerial implications for the stakeholders in the cloud platform.
Guo, Jason; Nikolay, Mehandjiev; and Wan, Guohua, "The Partner Ecosystem Evolution from On-premises Software to Cloud Services: a case study of SAP" (2019). PACIS 2019 Proceedings. 219.