Oracle has unveiled the next phase in its business-to-business marketplace strategy with products designed to release capital by building collaborative supply chains.
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The new collaborative suite includes Oracle Supply Chain Exchange, Oracle Transportation Exchange, Oracle Product Development Exchange and Oracle Exchange Marketplace. Supply Chain Exchange is designed to allow trading partners to connect with enterprise systems in order to enable real time inter-enterprise event management, collaboration, performance measurement, and synchronised planning and optimisation.
The Oracle plan is to provide all businesses with the relevant information to manage inventory more efficiently and thus unlock the value of the supply chain. In this manner, "A big automotive company could save billions of dollars." said Jeremy Burton, senior vice president for worldwide marketing at Oracle.
"With its masses of unsold inventory, retail is a classic example of waste in the supply chain." continued Burton.
Tony Lock, senior analyst at Bloor Research said, "Linking directly [to the supply chain] is a logical step for the Oracle Exchange to take." But he noted that the move is not as ground-breaking as Oracle would have the user community believe. "All supply chains are collaborative," said Lock, "If they are not then the chain breaks."
Lock pointed out that that a lot of supply chain collaboration is achieved today using the Web: by exchanging data via XML - as supported by Oracle - anyone in a supply chain using the right tools is able to access relevant data.