Sun sales arm SolNet is positioning itself in the electronic commerce market through a strategic partnership with US e-commerce specialist Ariba Technologies.
Ariba's operating resource management (ORM) software enables purchasers to control buying more easily and substantially reduce costs, says SolNet managing director Murray McNae. It is a network application that shares data with existing data sources such as legacy mainframe, client-server systems or suppliers' electronic commerce systems and automates requests from submission through approval, payment and reporting.
US research firm Killen & Associates esti-mates the ORM market will be worth more than $US750 million by 2000. According to Gartner Group, Ariba, which was estab-lished in 1996, has 34% of that market, more than twice that of its nearest competitor.
"We came across Ariba a few months ago when we were researching the market," McNae says. "They've expanded from the US to Europe but had no immediate plans for Australasia."
He says SolNet is talking to three large companies about the Ariba ORM solution. "There's a great deal of interest within large companies in how they can make business more efficient," he says. "Ariba seems to have come up with an interesting product that has the capacity to go right through the supply chain."
Through its strategic partnership with Ariba, SolNet will offer consulting and -implementation services, training and technical support for enterprise-wide ORM -solutions.
Oriba's ORM is built on the Java platform and runs on Sun Solaris and Windows NT. The client is a Web browser.