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One of the most important pillars at SAP is fostering innovation amongst our employees. This is done by creating an environment and incentives for our employees to not only contribute to the growth of SAP but also their own growth as well.

Through the SAP One Billion Lives program our employees proved, once again, that the sky is the limit when SAP employees are empowered to solve real problems. In 2018, thousands of employees across our Board areas and geographies reached out to us with their ideas. Ten ambitious and hard-working teams joined SAP.iO’s internal accelerator program and pitched for investment.

The aim of SAP One Billion Lives is to help solve the world’s biggest social problems by bringing together the best the company has to offer: its people, technology, data assets, and a vast ecosystem to develop a portfolio of lean, sustainable, shared-value impact ventures, operating at startup speed

These teams have put themselves in our customers’ shoes to understand their challenges. They have pushed boundaries by pioneering new ways to tap SAP data and technology and have engaged with numerous mentors to hone their business models.

2018 winners

The finalists were chosen from the more than 2,000 participants who entered and underwent intense mentoring in the SAP.iO Venture Studio while vying for funding that would help them turn a big idea into a business with a big social impact.

Pay Equity, which set out to counter unconscious bias in compensation, was one of 10 teams that emerged over the past seven months as finalists in the SAP One Billion Lives program. The team will now receive seed investment funds plus design, product, and development support from the SAP.iO Venture Studio to build the product, engage customers, and demonstrate traction and scale of their business.

                                              Lyndal Hagar and Jenngang Shih with SAP Executive Board Members Adaire Fox-Martin and Juergen Mueller

The team—Lyndal Hagar, Jenngang Shih, and Ritesh Chopra—was founded on the belief that SAP has the unique assets and expertise to help close the gender pay gap. For example, the SAP SuccessFactors solution portfolio provides valuable data that, when anonymized and analyzed with the company’s machine learning capabilities, can provide insight into the behaviour of more than 150 million employees around the world, including how they manage, develop, and—importantly—how they reward and compensate talent

Two other teams will receive support to work with customers and partners this year to further validate the viability of their projects:

CoPro: Vikram Nagendra and his team will work with BASF to explore how SAP technology can support provenance tracking of cobalt mining through the supply chain to identify and eliminate exploitative or child labor.

                                                                                               SAP One Billion Lives 2018 cohort team CoPro

Rapid Disaster Response: Led by Drew Birtwhistle, the team will work with the United Nations and NGOs to use SAP technology in the area of needs assessment during emergency and humanitarian crises.

                                                                                             SAP One Billion Lives 2018 cohort Rapid Disaster Response team

SAP One Billion Lives in 2019

Building on the early success of the initiative, an “always-on” approach to SAP One Billion Lives will be activated in 2019, we shall enable candidates to submit their ideas and access self-service educational offerings, including an openSAP course, at any time.
In addition, the program will be open for the first time to SAP customers, helping them create experiences of value for their communities. Together with SAP, they will be able to build social enterprises that benefit the societies in which they operate.

Brief History

Since its launch in 2016, projects have helped hundreds of thousands of people. For example, by developing genome-specific cancer treatment protocols in India with Ramesh Nimmagadda Cancer Foundation, the course of cancer treatments for more than half of cancer patients in the country have been changed. Similarly, by partnering with Hakusan Corporation to help protect millions of people from major earthquake disasters, SAP One Billion Lives ventures have successfully utilized the best of SAP to drive impact at massive scale.


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