Philly-based McDermott to take over as sole SAP boss

FILE - In this Jan. 23, 2013 file picture CEOs Jim Hagemann Snabe and Bill McDermott, right, pose for photographers prior to a press conference in Walldorf, southwestern Germany. (AP Photo/dpa, Uwe Anspach, File)

Newtown Square-based SAP AG executive Bill McDermott will become sole CEO of the German business software giant, under a proposal announced by the company's board today. Read the profile I wrote on McDermott, a Main Line resident and onetime Xerox salesman, in the Philadelphia Inquirer here. McDermott's official profile here.

The plan by SAP's Supervisory Board would have McDermott's Germany-based co-CEO, Jim Hagemann Snabe, step down at next May's shareholder meeting, leaving Snabe on the board. During their three-year partnership in the top job, SAP has inked a series of bold acquisitions meant to cope with the increased fragmentation of business software purchases as cloud servers and handheld devices challenge enterprise systems, while also pushing to move its brand downstream to computer users through marketing deals with the NFL and other mass marketers.

In a statement, Snabe said putting McDermott in the position of sole CEO will help "further accelerate SAP's success." Separately, SAP co-founder Hasso Plattner called McDermott "a visionary leader." The company will explain its decision to shareholders and reporters in a Monday conference call.