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SAP names CEO of Americas unit

The German software giant names former Siebel Systems executive William McDermott as CEO and president of its Americas division.

German software giant SAP said Monday it has named William McDermott as president and CEO of its Americas division.

McDermott formerly served as executive vice president of worldwide sales operations at software maker Siebel Systems. He was president of market researcher Gartner before that. McDermott will be responsible for SAP's U.S. and Canadian operations and will report to Leo Apotheker, president of global field operations and an executive board member of SAP.

SAP makes software that helps companies organize back-office operations such as payroll, human resources and accounting. In tough economic times for software companies, SAP has been battling for business against companies such as Siebel, Oracle and PeopleSoft.

SAP reported preliminary second quarter results recently that were well short of analyst expectations. The company said it saw weaker demand in all regions, except Germany, and lowered its 2002 sales forecast.

McDermott replaces Wolfgang Kemna, who was named executive vice president of global initiatives at SAP in May.