Sage X3 vs SAP Business One

Are spreadsheets and off-the-shelf accounting software applications no longer keeping the pace with the workload—it could be a sign it’s time to upgrade to a full featured, fully integrated ERP solution.

To help you along your ERP evaluation journey, we’ll be comparing two leading ERP solutions for manufacturing and distribution businesses: Sage X3 (also called Sage EM) and SAP Business One. Both SAP and Sage are among the top suppliers of ERP software globally.


Sage X3 and SAP Business One are ideal for most SMB and mid-market manufacturing and distribution businesses looking to scale their operations. Both ERP offerings can be deployed either on-premise or in the cloud. Both system offer strong process manufacturing capabilities including Instrumentation Controls, Food & Beverage and Chemicals. Both Sage and SAP natively support industry requirements like Change Control Management, Lot Traceability, Quality Assurance, and enable regulatory compliance by the FDA, 21 CFR Part 11 and FSMA.

So, how are they different? 

Keep reading to learn more about the key differences between Sage X3 vs SAP Business One.    


Background Overview

SAP Business One

SAP Business One is an ERP solution specially built for small- and medium-sized businesses, i.e. those with less than 100 users. It boasts an expansive client base of over 60,000 companies in 150 countries.

Business One covers nearly every business area, including sales, reporting, financial planning, vendor management, inventory management, project management, and customer relationship management. It also provides 1,500+ integrations for supply chain management, e-commerce, finance, and CRM.

Over the years, SAP and its partners have developed a plethora of industry-specific solutions and use cases that have been tried and tested in manufacturing, retail, energy, public service, and financial service. Softengine has lead in this effort developing leading solutions for Food & Beverage, Apparel & Footwear and Nonprofit industries.  

Sage X3

The underlying architecture of Sage X3 is actually inherited from Adonix, which Sage acquired in 2005. As of this writing, Sage is continuing to push a rebrand from Sage X3 towards Sage EM (Enterprise Management) but you'll still find many referring to this product as X3.  X3 has been sold in the US market since 2012 and continues to be their flagship ERP offering.

SAP Business One Readiness Quiz


SAP vs. NetSuite: Company Comparison




SAP is the global leader for ERP software, currently at the top of the list in terms of market share.

They offer a staggering number of products and services ranging from cloud ERP software and CRM solutions to IoT and machine learning applications.
Sage is the second largest technology company in the UK and one of the largest ERP software providers globally.

Years in Business
47 Years
38 Years
~60,000 (SAP B1)
~6,000 (x3 customers)
Target Industries
Manufacturing Distribution
Retail Services
Nonprofit Ecommerce
Manufacturing Distribution
Construction Services

SAP Business One vs. Sage X3: Features and Functionality


SAP Business One

Sage X3

Product Brochure (Download) SAP Brochure Cover Image-1 X3 Brochure Image


General Ledger
Fixed Asset Management
Cash Flow Management
Invoicing Prepayments
Banking & Reconciliation Processing Currency Management
Financial Reporting & Analysis Intercompany Transactions*
Cost Accounting
Budgets & Accounting
Fixed Assets
Financial Reporting

Sales and CRM

Sales Cycle Tracking
Drop Shipping & Special Orders
Marketing Campaign Management
Marketing Campaign Analysis
Customer Data Management
Contract Administration
Service Call
Sales Forecasting
Pipeline Tracking
Returns & Cancellations
Service Order Management
Multi-Tier Price List Management (including periodic and volume management)
Sales Cycle Tracking
Recurring Contracts
Invoicing Management
Service Call
Maintenance Call
Supply Chain Management  
Procurement Process Tracking
Purchase Schedule Management
Inventory Tracking & Reporting
Warehouse & Accounting Data Synchronization
Real-Time Production Reporting
Stock Location & Transfer Tracking
Distribution Management
Production Planning
Bin Management
Warehouse Management*
Automated Data Capture / Scanning*
Inventory Management
Sales Management
Customer Service
Warehousing & Logistics*
*via integrated applications

* Indicates SAP Add-On functionality

SAP Business One vs NetSuite: Customer Support



Sage X3

Tech Support

24/hr toll-free phone support.
24/7 live call, chat, and email

End-User Training

Instructor-led training and virtual training (via openSAP) available.
Articles, product updates and product manuals available through Sage X3’s knowledge base

Online Support

Full suite of diverse online support options available to all subscribers.
Support management via Sage X3 business partners

User Groups

Local user groups exist in multiple locations across the US.
Robust user groups communities across the US.

 SAP Business One Readiness Quiz


Sage X3 vs. SAP Business One: Deployment

Both solutions offer similar deployment methodologies.  Both can be implemented on-premise with a perpetual license agreement or deployed in the cloud via a software subscription.  The Sage X3 cloud solution is hosted by Sage whereas an SAP Business One solution can be hosted by SAP or a variety of hosting providers like Softengine.  With SAP you get a bit more flexibility when it comes to deployment options.  

Sage X3 vs. SAP Business One: Licensing

Sage X3 and SAP Business One provide tremendous value for money, though SAP Business One has more licensing options for smaller sized organizations.  Sage X3 licensing model and product is really designed for companies with annual revenues in excess of ~30 million per year according to Sage.   Whereas SAP Business One offers licensing options for companies with revenues in the $5-10 million range and scale up from there.  

Generally speaking both SAP Business One and Sage X3 subscription licensing starts in the mid-teens per year for just a handful of users with limited functionality. Ultimately the price of your ERP solution will depend upon your unique situation and project scope.  

Sage X3 vs. SAP Business One: Reporting and Analytics

Customer reviews cite native reporting for Sage EM is rarely used, and requires the use a 3rd party BI tools or crystal reports, which in the world of ERP software is not uncommon. But Business One is clearly the frontrunner in terms of database management, querying, analytical tools, and overall performance. The HANA in-memory RDBMS is a definite advantage for SAP in terms of reporting and analytics.


Sage X3 vs. SAP Business One: Conclusion

For SMB and mid-market sized manufacturing companies looking to scale their operations, both Sage X3 and SAP Business One should be on the short list of ERP systems to consider.  In terms of which is best, it will likely depend upon your unique set of needs and budget.  We at Softengine are experts at helping companies evaluate whether or not SAP Business One is right for them.  

Still trying to figure out what ERP is right for you?  Take our interactive assessment below to see if Business One makes sense for your business and how much it will cost based upon your unique needs.

SAP Business One Readiness Quiz

Get Free Widget