Last Friday, on 14 November 2014, the SAP AppHaus in Heidelberg celebrated its first birthday with an open house event, welcoming more than 300 interested colleagues and neighbors from the Landfried complex curious to discover the Design & Co-Innovation Center’s home of innovation. For all of you who could not make it to the AppHaus last Friday, here are some lively insights from the Open Day.


The AppHaus is the home of the Design & Co-Innovation Center (DCC) in Heidelberg, a multidisciplinary team established with the mission to change the customers’ perception of SAP User Experience. SAP designers, developers, and business experts jointly work with customers to create new innovative products by leveraging their expertise and knowledge.

At the Open House Day the DCC team showed how it is taking co-innovation a step further. Visitors had the opportunity to experience the creative space, to discover completed and ongoing projects of the DCC and to try out Design Thinking methods in practice, such as the marshmallow challenge.


Shortly before 2 pm when the Open Day officially started, some visitors had already gathered at the reception, curiously waiting for the first AppHaus tour to begin, which suggested the enthusiasm for the working space and the design center created there. They learned that in late 2013, SAP opened its first customer-focused AppHaus in Heidelberg following the launch of the first SAP AppHaus in Los Altos, US, in 2011, and other workplaces across the globe. Since then, the AppHaus in Heidelberg has been well received: In 2014 alone, it welcomed more than 2,500 visitors and hosted 140 events.

The SAP AppHaus in Heidelberg is a creative workspace located in a former tobacco factory in downtown Heidelberg. It echoes aspects of a startup culture and triggers innovation through its vastness and light, encouraging people to explore thoughts and exchange points of view. About 340 square meters of walls can be used as whiteboards, helping creative ideas come to life. Wheeled furniture can easily be moved around to fit project needs. This enthralled visitors like Johannes, who experienced the AppHaus as a “very creative, SAP unusual working space.


In the project area in the workshop space visitors could get insights into the DCC’s work. Cubes hanging from the ceiling showcased project highlights, award-winning innovations and other projects that are about to become SAP standard solutions.

René Kaufmann from Heldenpause, a start-up company from Heidelberg located next to the SAP AppHaus, shared his impressions with us: “I was really impressed by the open, inviting atmosphere. You can touch things, experience things..”


Visitors could also enhance their creativity by creating a one-minute profile of themselves and by participating in the marshmallow challenge, a team-building exercise usually applied as a warm-up in Design Thinking sessions. Another activity was the photo booth where the DCC team took pictures of the visitors who could see their shoot afterwards on the cover of the AppHaus design magazine, which they could take home.


In fact, the Open Day attracted over 300 internal and external visitors who came together for an afternoon of innovative ideas and new encounters.

It was my first time in the AppHaus in Heidelberg, but I’ve heard a lot of positive feedback from my colleagues. I’m very surprised about the inspiring atmosphere in the SAP AppHaus and I’m sure that our partners and customers can benefit from it. For sure I’ll come back with my partners and/or customers to run a workshop”, said Mario Fetzner, SAP Global SME Business Unit.


More than expressing their interest in person, people also did not hesitate to make use of social media and spread their impressions on the web.



Thanks for such a lively afternoon with all interesting visitors. We look forward to welcoming you soon again at the SAP AppHaus Heidelberg!


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