IBM and EXE Focus on Supply Chain

Jim Martin

In an attempt to become a player in a supply chain market that is expected to explode over the next couple of years, IBM and EXE Technologies (White Plains, N.Y.) have joined forces to provide supply-chain customers with integrated solutions designed to help them transform into e-business.

According to a report by IDC (Framingham, Mass.) titled Product-Supply-Chain Vertical Applications: 1999 Worldwide Markets and Trends, the worldwide product-supply-chain vertical applications industry reached $13 billion market in 1998 and will become a $22.9 billion industry by 2003.

“As companies attempt to transform their traditional stores into e-business, they often overlook the complexity and costs associated with having an efficient back-end offer fulfillment system,” says Ray Hood, CEO, EXE Technologies. “The combined IBM and EXE supply chain and e-fulfillment solutions will allow customers to realize the full value of their new e-business models.”

Through the relationship, EXE will incorporate the standards and technologies of IBM’s Application Framework for e-business. The solutions, some of which will run on the AS/400, will initially target the automotive, consumer-packaged goods, retail and wholesale distribution industries.

“Our experience with EXE as a business partner has convinced us that EXE is clearly a market leader in supply-chain execution and fulfillment solutions in key vertical markets,” says Bill Paulk, general manager of Enterprise Resource Planning and Supply Chain Solutions, IBM Global Industries. “Adding EXE to IBM’s select group of supply chain partners, such as i2 and IMI, will help us deliver a complete, integrated supply-chain solution to our customers.”