SAP Thinks Small

Illustration for TIME by SCOTT MENCHIN

Sudden success can be more challenging than failure. In 2000, for example, the German soft pretzelmaker Brezelbäckerei Ditsch GmbH found itself growing faster than it had planned. The Mainz-based company's hottest product — a line of frozen oven-ready soft pretzels — fueled a growth spurt and Ditsch's managers knew they needed to overhaul their computers and software in order to cope with expansion. Ditsch's sales of baked goods to more than 160 bakeries across Germany grew from €40 million in 2000 to about €70 million in 2003. A committee was appointed to explore new software, and Michael Roche, a Briton who...

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