Some consider SAP, based in Walldorf, Germany, to be Europe's answer to Microsoft. Thanks to the tech smarts and marketing savvy of co-chairmen HASSO PLATTNER, 54, and DIETMAR HOPP, 57, SAP's programs now drive the back offices of many of the globe's biggest companies. And in '97, SAP launched an Internet commerce venture with Intel. From $2.1 billion in '96, sales soared more than 60% for '97's first nine months. With profits hopping at the same pace, SAP shares jumped about 145% for the year.
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