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Waste Management Inc. sues SAP Americas

US company Waste Management Inc. has sued SAP Americas Inc. and its German parent, SAP AG, alleging that they fraudulently induced it to purchase software for running its business that was “undeveloped, untested and defective.”

Houston-based Waste Management says in the lawsuit, which was filed last Thursday in district court in Harris County, Texas, that it invested more than $100 million in buying and installing the software.

Waste Management (NYSE:WMI) is asking for actual and punitive damages, attorneys’ fees, other costs of the lawsuit and pre-and post-judgment interest.

An SAP (NYSE:SAP) spokesman said SAP doesn’t comment on ongoing litigation. SAP Americas is based in Newtown Square, Pa.

In the suit, Waste Management alleges that in late 2004 or early 2005, SAP learned it was looking for software to replace the software it was using to run its business.

SAP, the suit says, knew that Waste Management wanted software that didn’t have to be heavily customized and could be installed rapidly.

According to the suit, SAP represented to Waste Management that it had such software, when what it actually had was “software still in development and utterly incapable of running the operations of an American waste and recycling company.”  More here…

Wasters Comment: This is a serious matter, but not uncommon in the UK that software systems fail to achieve their intended purpose. Does anyone remember that all patient National Health Service records were due to be available to all in the UK via a National Health Service web site? Well it never happened did it? Maybe it is time that someone in the UK took the software suppliers to court?

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