Ariba chief stresses e-business 'cultural shift'

E-commerce is the largest marketplace the world has ever seen and in this emerging new economy it's not about the big eating the small, but the fast eating the slow, Ariba CEO Keith Krach said in Sydney last week.

Speaking at Ariba Live 2001, the company's B2B world tour covering seven cities across five continents, Krach described e-commerce as the next industrial revolution which will drive the global economy over the next two decades.

"We haven't seen anything like this for 100 years and it's just not about the technology, the toughest part is the cultural shift," he said.

Krach said B2B is a "back to basics" business model where the focus is on cutting costs, increasing revenue and retaining customers.

"Ariba is positioning itself for this shift; we want to be the Cisco in this space," he said.

Describing Ariba as the first Internet B2B to report profits, Krach pointed to the company's 2001 Q1 fiscal results which reached $US170.2 million, a 625 per cent jump on the same period last year.

Allan Smith, the company's Australia New Zealand CEO, announced that NRMA had gone live with its Ariba B2B e-commerce platform and is trading electronically with five key suppliers.

"There are 600 users and implementation took three months; it is aimed at streamlining internal processes and enables NRMA to electronically aggregate purchasing to preferred suppliers and B2B marketplaces," he said.

NRMA spends more than A$1 billion dollars annually on home and motoring claims and the Ariba Buyer solution will target both claims and non-claims expenditure.

Also at the event, QSI Payments announced an alliance with Ariba to deliver an integrated card-payment processing utility for online business transactions.

This joint solution for the Asia-Pacific region will let buyers and suppliers on the Ariba network process card payments electronically.

Selby-Biolab announced it is developing a digital marketplace to meet the purchasing needs of Australasian industrial research and medical organisations from a single Web site.

Designed by Arthur Andersen it will be hosted by Telecom New Zealand as Selby-Biolab already has an established marketplace in New Zealand.

Companies already on board include Corporate Express, Computerland and Dick Smith Electronics.

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More about AndersenAndersenAribaArthur AndersenComputerlandCorporate ExpressDick Smith ElectronicsNRMA GroupQSI PaymentsTelecom New Zealand

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