The Web-based B2B platform supplied by Ironside will be used by 7,500 dealers across Europe who will be able to access specification, availability and order information on 2,000 product lines.
Goodyear has already implemented a similar system in its Latin American sector. The business benefits accrued there convinced the company to apply the system in Europe.
George Rietbergen, Goodyear director of e-business for Europe, Middle East and Africa, said, "We have seen costs reduced. Because of online ordering telephone calls are minimised and there's no need for a call centre. And we don't need to post out technical product information to customers so we save on shipping costs too."
"Secondly, the electronic link between ourselves and the customer gives a preferred status to the relationship," he added.
The company is still in the process of overcoming integration challenges as a number of different business units are brought together to provide a unified back end to the B2B platform.
"We are still working towards achieving standard data throughout Europe. That means that some countries need special solutions to link with the Ironside platform," said Rietbergen.
Customers will be able to access product information and inventory availability, place and track orders, have them confirmed and deal with billing.
The platform will be rolled out initially in Germany, with full European roll-out expected halfway through 2002.