Online Paper Procurement — A Changing Landscape
Paper2print’s solution connects printers, print buyers, distributors and paper mills, as well as provides solutions to better monitor and control inventory.
The site enables users to identify supply chain partners, and then electronically transmit orders and receive confirmations via Paper2- print. Users can check on open orders, orders received, orders acknowledged, orders in production and completed orders. Once the order is completed, the user can also track the fulfillment of their orders.
Fob.com, Fobpaper’s parent company, has closed its online Fobpaper, Fobplastics and Fobchemicals sites as part of its business model realignment.
Instead, Fob was planning to launch its new offering, ProSource, a Web-enabled e-procurement platform for the purchase of raw materials such as paper, chemicals and plastics. However, Fob.com announced in late November that it was suspending indefinitely the development of ProSource. For now, Fob.com has decided to turn its attention toward its MSDSonline offering. MSDS develops solutions for the electronic management of health and safety information, including Material Safety Data Sheets.
“This move is designed to more effectively focus our management team and financial resources toward building a business that will quickly generate cash flow and is positioned for rapid growth,” says Patrick Blake, Fob CEO and co-founder. “The market potential for environmental, health and safety data management has far exceeded our expectations.”
Backed by Appleton Papers, Paperhub is a new online private exchange for paper products. Paperhub claims to enhance business-to-business relationships between paper mills, merchants and printers. Launching in 2001, Paperhub plans to provide an online resource that combines education with the ability to conduct e-commerce transactions.
To ensure that the transactions are seamless, Paperhub—in partnership with webMethods and Appleton Papers—developed a printing and publishing markup language called PML. It is a new protocol for Internet-based commerce between buyers and sellers of paper and printing products. The intent of the partnership was to develop and implement integrated, end-to-end, e-commerce solutions for paper industry members. Based on Extensible Markup Language (XML), PML will enable the Web-based integration of a range of transaction services and catalogs to facilitate efficient, system-to-system transactions.