When the SAP Partner Summit started yesterday, Red Hat had a prime sponsorship position at the welcome reception. Read between the lines, and a quiet battle is brewing between Red Hat and Novell; the two leaning Linux service distribution providers are battling for the love and affection of SAP. Here's why.

Over the past few years, Novell has successfully promoted a close SUSE Linux working relationship with SAP. Over and over again, Novell has highlighted key customer wins involving the the SUSE Linux-SAP combo. Sure, Red Hat has a close working relationship with SAP. But all of the Novell-SAP chatter seemed louder and more frequent.

That changed yesterday. When The VAR Guy arrived at SAP Partner Summit, our resident blogger noticed Red Hat securing prime sponsor position at the conference's welcome reception. Smart move. Red Hat needs to keep close to SAP for two reasons:
  • First, Red Hat needs to offset the SAP-Novell relationship, which is high profile among partners and customers.
  • And second, the Red Hat-SAP combo helps to offset Oracle's marketing for Unbreakable Linux tied to Oracle applications.
The VAR Guy will be checking in with Red Hat to see how the SAP partnership is progressing.