Saqqara Systems To Launch Hosted Service

The service is a hosted option for ContentWorks and CommerceSuite, which will still be sold to companies looking to manage their own content and catalogs sent from suppliers.

InformationWeek Staff, Contributor

April 19, 2002

2 Min Read

Saqqara Systems Inc., a content-management vendor focused on E-procurement, plans to unveil a hosted service at the end of the month. For a base price of $1.2 million for a three-year contract covering 100 suppliers, Saqqara will upload supplier product catalogs and map the data to the buyer's E-procurement system, such as those from Ariba, Commerce One, or i2 Technologies.

Buyers, who are Saqqara's targeted customers, can align content delivery with their own business processes, setting rules determining the product data sent to each buyer, so workers do not get information they don't need. "This is not an aggregated catalog where we mix and match" suppliers with buyers, Saqqara CEO Brad Albright says. "This is very much applied to the individual preferences and requirements of the buyer." Suppliers can use File Transfer Protocol in uploading catalogs in any data format, or any other electronic feed. Suppliers can also upload files as an attachment sent through Saqqara's Web interface.

The service, which is scheduled to be unveiled April 29, is a hosted option for Saqqara's ContentWorks and CommerceSuite, which will still be sold to companies looking to manage their own content and catalogs sent from suppliers. Laurie Orlov, an analyst for Forrester Research, says a managed service is an option for getting more suppliers online to automate the buying process. Resistance from suppliers has hampered many E-procurement efforts, which have failed to adequately address the needs of midsize and small suppliers. Many of those companies don't have computing systems capable of connecting to modern E-procurement systems, Orlov says. For a large buyer, the cost of Saqqara's service may make sense if the company can cover the 20% of its suppliers that account for 80% of its purchases, the so-called "80-20 rule" in manufacturing.

However, companies that can afford $1.2 million would have other options, such as deploying software in-house or requiring their core suppliers to adopt the buyer's standards for doing business electronically. "There are other options open at that price point," says Meta Group analyst Kip Martin. Companies will have to weigh the benefits of available options based on individual requirements.

Saqqara, founded in 1995, has raised a total of $53 million from investors, which include Cross Atlantic Ventures, Dresdner Kleinwort Capital, and Vision Capital. The company expects to be profitable in the third quarter of this year.

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