McKinsey expands alliance with SAP to accelerate generative AI-enabled transformation

McKinsey is proud to announce a new generative AI collaboration with SAP that expands on its long-standing strategic alliance. The new offering, the Generative Enterprise, aims to unlock synergies between SAP Business AI and QuantumBlack, AI by McKinsey to help leaders bring the Generative Enterprise to life and build sustainable, resilient, and adaptive businesses.

Generative AI is expected to unlock between $2.6 and 4.4 trillion in annual economic benefits and enable the automation of up to 70 percent of business activities. This potential has triggered a race for executives at companies of all sizes to quickly develop and execute plans to create AI-enabled value across their organizations

One path to winning that race runs with SAP, whose customers generate 87 percent of total global commerce. The organization’s core enterprise ecosystem, with SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP) as the foundation, is therefore a prime area for realizing the greatest value from generative AI and other emerging technologies.

“Our values compel us to help businesses effectively navigate any crisis,” says Bob Sternfels, global managing partner for McKinsey. “In the enterprise context, partnering with SAP on this vision to deliver the Generative Enterprise is a privilege that we’re grateful for. Together, we can help pave the sustainable path to impact through technology.”

“Relevant, reliable, and responsible AI can help transform companies faster than ever,” says Christian Klein, CEO and member of the executive board of SAP SE. “This collaboration with McKinsey on the Generative Enterprise enables us to bring together the best of our individual strengths in technology and strategy execution to help customers unlock AI-enabled value across their core business processes.”

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Together, McKinsey and SAP have identified several value opportunity sources, including the enhancement of SAP S/4HANA’s out-of-the-box functionality and other assets that can accelerate transformation, such as code generation.

But the full potential generative AI benefit, both organizations agree, goes well beyond individual applications.

“There is tremendous upside with generative AI for businesses with a cloud-enabled application portfolio,” says Bjørnar Jensen, McKinsey senior partner, McKinsey Digital Europe leader, and SAP alliance global leader. “The mature, structured business processes and system insights from SAP present exciting possibilities for generative AI-enabled transformation.”

“We are excited to expand our longstanding relationship with SAP,” says Alexander Sukharevsky, McKinsey senior partner and global co-leader of QuantumBlack, AI by McKinsey. “Our joint R&D and scaling efforts will continue to dramatically shift cost curves for leading organizations while reinventing their business models and the industries they operate in.”

In the enterprise context, partnering with SAP on this vision to deliver the Generative Enterprise is a privilege that we’re grateful for. Together, we can help pave the sustainable path to impact through technology.

Bob Sternfels, McKinsey global managing partner

McKinsey research on resilient businesses indicates that managing disruptions defines sustainable growth more than managing continuity. McKinsey and SAP agree that generative AI can help improve the overall resilience of a business. This is the genesis of the Generative Enterprise vision.

The new offering can help clients use generative AI to adapt to disruption through perpetual synchronization across strategy, operating models, process and data design, and operational execution enabled by AI.

“More than 70 percent of the value from business transformations across sectors is critically dependent on technology,” says Aamer Baig, global McKinsey Technology leader. “The ability of business to perpetually synchronize from strategy through process execution and technology will ensure realization of maximum value potential and help avoid unnecessary technical debt.”

Guided by the transformation roadmap and approach described in Rewired: The McKinsey guide to outcompeting in the age of digital and AI, McKinsey is also collaborating with SAP to define a Generative Enterprise playbook that includes an AI-driven reference for business operating models. Organizations with high product operating model maturity across geographies and industries have 60 percent higher returns to shareholders.


SAP & McKinsey

SAP and McKinsey have drawn on their individual strengths to create a strategic alliance that shifts the focus from technical implementation to business transformation by merging technology modernization with strategy execution, helping companies address critical challenges and drive business results.

The offering also features platform reference architecture that combines process excellence, broad AI architecture and MLOps, cloud deployment platform, and enterprise architecture governance. “We are very excited about collaborating with SAP on the Generative Enterprise to shape customer contextual models for enterprise application,” says Darwin Deano, a McKinsey partner and architect of Generative Enterprise.

Finally, the Generative Enterprise offers a multi-dimensional library of AI use cases and the corresponding business scenario roadmaps.

McKinsey is committed to helping businesses be ready for any scenario. Together with SAP, we are vigorously shaping the Generative Enterprise roadmap and deploying select use cases with flagship clients.