The globally active Müller Martini Group chooses Conextrade in its implementation of an end-to-end e-procurement strategy. The group uses the trading platform from Swisscom for paperless processing of orders and invoices.
Müller Martini is a Swiss success story. Founded in 1946 by Hans Müller and based in Zofingen, it has developed into one of the world’s largest suppliers of postpress systems and also manufactures narrowband web offset printing machines. The group employs more than 4,000 people, manufactures its products in nine locations in Switzerland, Germany, China and the USA and has more than 40 sales and service companies at its disposal.
Until 2001 this traditional, familyrun company, which is active in 50 countries, processed its orders and invoices the old-fashioned way – on paper. The internal procurement department’s positive experiences using an electronic solution encouraged Dieter Bracher, head of Group Purchasing, to go one step further. Convinced of the benefits of the Conextrade electronic trading system from Swisscom, he began a pilot project one year later with one of the company’s suppliers. GIA Informatik AG, the Müller Martini Group’s IT company and SAP solution provider, was responsible for the successful connection of supplier systems. Although the pilot project went off without a hitch, this was no guarantee that implementation of Conextrade would go the same way. “Setting up communication between the various companies and their different technologies proved to be really difficult,” says Bracher. Just the right challenge for Swisscom.
Additional suppliers were added, either connected via an Application Service Provider (ASP) or fully integrated into the system. Three integration steps were selected in setting up electronic pro-curement of components for immediate use in the machines and systems. Mail orders go through SAP using an ASP so-lution or a fully integrated B2B solution. ”Thanks to Conextrade, service is guaranteed at all times, regardless of the ERP solution used by the supplier in question,” says Bracher. Müller Martini is currently connected to 50 suppliers via Conextrade. The implementation of this solution not only led to a drastic reduction in the number of errors at the group-process quality also rose as did the speed of data flows. The option of ordering products at short notice also opens up enormous savings potential: “We save around CHF 15 per order and invoice,” says Bracher.
Among other things, the new solution means that the company can outsource its metal blanks to a subcontractor, a business which generates more than 10,000 positions each year. Compared to the older system, order placement and invoicing are also simpler and cheaper. This has been achieved with an extremely high level of cost transparency and a return on investment (ROI) in less than two years. Müller Martini’s suppliers also benefit from the implementation of a paperless electronic order and invoicing system, as no additional processes need supporting. A further benefit for suppliers is the inclusion of a VAT-compliant e-invoicing solution to replace the periodic bulk paper invoices.
It means that Müller Martini has achieved its objectives of dramatically reducing order processing costs and times with a concurrent increase in process security.The consistent implementation of an e-procurement strategy together with the introduction of an e-invoicing solution via the electronic trading platform Conextrade from Swisscom is a further milestone in Müller Martini’s success story.
The Swiss Müller Martini Group is the global leader in the development, manufacture and marketing of postpress systems, and the production of narrow-band web offset printing machines.