According to spokesmen, “Ariba Discovery” eliminates the hassle of  discovering qualified partners and business leads by instantly matching  buyer requirements to supplier capabilities

Ariba, Inc.,  which recently launched a cloud-based “matching” service allowing buyers  to identify and qualify suppliers from a global community, says the  time is right for social networking to control more of the supply chain.

According to spokesmen, “Ariba Discovery” eliminates the hassle of  discovering qualified partners and business leads by instantly matching  buyer requirements to supplier capabilities. Fully-integrated with  Ariba’s “ Sourcing On Demand,” it puts more than 500,000 selling  organizations in touch with “Global 2000” buyers that are in active  purchasing cycles.

“It’s a virtual dating game for the supply chain,” a spokesman told SCMR.

To enhance the value of the service to buyers and sellers alike,  Ariba has teamed with leading companies such as American Express OPEN  and IBM.

“Online business-to-business marketplaces are a great way for small  businesses to seek business with larger enterprises,” said Rob Ganjon,  Vice President, American Express OPEN. “Ariba Discovery is a lead  generating platform, which means small businesses are connecting with  key decision makers and purchasing agents in the right place at the  right time.”

While the service is not positioned against any one specific  competitor, SCMR was told that it will represent an enhancement to the  contract management niche.

“There’s a rather narrow footprint in that space now,” said Sundar  Kamakshisundaram, head of Ariba’s solutions marketing division. “Small-  to medium-size businesses will find this offering attractive, as it  gives them a scalable contract management tool.”

Buyers can post RFPs or RFIs and have them automatically matched with  sellers who meet their requirements. They can gain access to  community-based references and ratings to judge seller capabilities and  performance. Furthermore, said the company, buyer can gain visibility  into e-commerce capabilities and performance with other buying  organizations to determine experience level and fit.

Sellers, meanwhile, can Reduce the time and expense associated with finding new business and managing relationships.


“As a mid-range company with finite resources, it’s difficult to get our  arms around a national audience and canvas Fortune 1000 companies,”  said Greg Bosserman Vice President, Business/Program Development,  Support Services of America (SSA). “Ariba Discovery enables us to do  this and has helped us to maximize our resources to the point that we  anticipate that in two years, we could bid on several times the amount  of business we do today.”