This is one of my favourite events, SAOUG, this year held in Vanderbijlpark.
The organiser, Wolfgang, asked me to come back, speak more on cloud but make it more personal to the majority of members who had no intention of moving to Cloud.
But don't under estimate the Difference A Cloud Makes, Oracle announced a data centre coming to South Africa in the next 12 months, and they were really excited by it.
The first key note was from Jan Jaap Dekker who is responsible for Apps Unlimited sales in EMEA. Yes you read that correctly, there is a team that sells App Unlimited licences, they are not dead. I am really pleased about this because there was a period of time where we as partners joked the only way to get an extra licence was to be audited. There are customers who have real business reasons to extend their investment, normally through acquisitions.
My first presentation was the always popular ' Should I go to SaaS Cloud?'. The room was full, they needed more chairs and the conversation was excellent. Two large corporations sat with me during the event exploring this further and Jan gave me the feedback it was a very balanced presentation.
Wolfgang also asked me to talk about PaaS with an emphasis on using it with Apps Unlimited. People are already moving their extensions out of the applications and the most common tool is APEX, which I love. In my PaaS presentation no surprise chatbots was the most exciting tool.
I suggested to Wolfgang the conference finish with a Cloud Panel session to answer the unanswered questions. I did get the session, but it was a panel for one!! Again a full room and lots of questions I was able to answer with real life examples.
On the second day there was a keynote from a senior Oracle executive in South Africa. This is always a tricky ask, a user group wants a country leader, they want to know company strategy and they want a local angle; what they don't want is a sales pitch. Well they certainly hit the jackpot with Phakiso Mataitsane, he was engaging, motivating and talked at the very end about how the Oracle community and Oracle themselves can help South Africa. HIs presentation on Hope in South Africa, and how in some small way we are all part of that future, including Oracle, was hands down the most inspiring Oracle presentation I have heard. That doesn't mean none of the other's have been but, this wiped the floor
It was a great conference and I loved what they did for the Next Generation. Thanks to everyone and I hope to be back next year.