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ACQUION PROVIDES PROCUREMENT SOLUTIONS FOR BOTH LEGACY AND SAP USERS IN CHEMICAL & CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRIES
Hoechst Celanese (Legacy Location) and CSR (SAP Client) Embrace Electronic Cataloging
GREENVILLE, SC, June 11, 1997 -- Hoechst Celanese Specialty Chemicals Group (USA) has chosen Fluor Daniel (NYSE: FLR) affiliate, ACQUION, to implement its integrated electronic cataloging product, Global Electronic Trading Services (GETS), to streamline the companys $500 million dollar procurement operation. GETS promises to save Hoechst 38% in procurement operating costs, in addition to standardizing information and inventory, which is expected to allow Hoechst to cut current storeroom inventories in half.
As early as 1990, procurement executives at Hoechst Celaneses Specialty Chemicals Group in Charlotte, NC, were discussing ways to improve supply-chain capabilities. One of those executives, Jim Dickinson, Director of Supply and Distribution, identified an electronic supplier catalog as having the potential for improved sourcing capabilities.
"In October of 1996, we requested vendor proposals for an electronic cataloging supply-chain solution that would integrate with the legacy system and allow us to re-focus our procurement efforts from transactional to strategic," says Jim Copas, Manager, Technical Purchasing. "We were about to sign a contract, albeit, not completely satisfied with the solution. One of our major concerns was that the EC vendor was too colloquial in their cataloging approach. They made the false assumption that a requisitioner would know what supplier he wanted to buy from, and go directly to the respective catalog to order the item. We invariably saw what was essentially an extension of a paper supplier catalog, rather than a solution that understands the procurement process and the hurdles that are intrinsic to the transaction cycle. Most electronic cataloging vendors are driven by an IT background and bias and a predominantly retail mind set. Fortunately, one of our suppliers suggested we speak to ACQUION. When we learned that they were an affiliate of Fluor Daniel, offering innovative cataloging solutions, we became very interested," says Copas.
"ACQUION demonstrated a far greater understanding of MRO (Maintenance Repair Operations) purchasing. ACQUIONs approach allows requisitioners to find the item they are looking for in the way they would optimally look for it; searching across multiple catalogs, and selecting the supplier who best serves their needs and budgetary considerations," says Matt Bohn, Purchasing Process Optimization Manager.
A key issue in the decision was that ACQUION did not have rigid requirements on how suppliers should provide data. Other vendors required that suppliers categorize and fit information into the vendors customized format. ACQUION was prepared to manage the data translation and agreed to take the information in any format, yet still make it uniformly accessible to Hoechst Celanese.
Discussing the benefits of the ACQUION/ Hoechst Celanese affiliation, Dickinson says, "Electronic catalogs will be fundamental to making procurement a competitive advantage in our operations; our buyers spend 70% of their time on transactional work and only 30% on strategic. By December 1998, we expect to be only 10% transactional and 90% strategic; our buyers will spend more time negotiating contracts and less time processing data. Efficiency and savings are not exclusively the product of automated transactions. Standardized catalogs will make the same information instantly available to all our requisitioners, enabling leveraged and decentralized purchasing with centralized control; what we like to call freedom without choice. Of course, this standardization will also allow us to work with a smaller number of suppliers who can each focus more directly on meeting our needs."
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