SAP Ariba Celebrates 20 Years Of Innovation (Graphic: Business Wire)

Twenty years ago, procurement was a manual function driven largely by phone calls, faxes and handshakes. Then along came the Internet. And a company named Ariba. And everything changed. It all started with the idea that buying and selling among businesses didn't need to be so hard. That with the right technology, companies could automate the process and interact in totally new ways that enhance their top and bottom lines.

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SAP Ariba Celebrates 20 Years of Innovation (Graphic: Business Wire)

SAP Ariba Celebrates 20 Years of Innovation (Graphic: Business Wire)

"What Ariba was talking about in 1996 was a revolutionary concept," said Shelley Stewart, Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer at DuPont Company. "We took a big chance in embracing it at the time, but it has clearly paid off. Technology and networks have completely changed the way business is done and helped to move procurement from a tactical function to a strategic driver of business value."

Zachary Engels, Senior Analyst, Sourcing, PolyOne Corporation, agrees. "For us, procurement has always been about more than just savings. Our goal is to drive supply chain efficiency on a global scale," he said. "And although it seemed crazy at the time, we realized that technology and business networks could help us do this and increase the value we deliver to our organization."

Focused on Innovation

SAP Ariba paved the way for this transition through innovations that over the last two decades have completely changed the way buyers and suppliers connect and get business done. The company for instance:

• Launched the first online catalog for procurement.

• Developed the first software to conduct reverse auctions.

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