SAP, IBM, and American Express Deliver New Solutions For Wholesale Distribution Companies

Global Leaders Team to Deliver Complete Software, Hardware, and Financing Solutions to Small and Midsize Companies

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ORLANDO, Fla - 17 Jun 2003: SAP AG, IBM, and American Express today announced the availability of comprehensive distribution solutions for small and midsize wholesale and distribution companies based on mySAP(TM) All-in-One and SAP® Business One. With the new solutions, SAP joins with leaders in technology and business services to present a compelling new technology solution path to address the industry-specific needs of wholesale distribution companies over the life cycle of their businesses. The announcement was made at SAPPHIRE® '03, SAP's international customer conference being held in Orlando, Florida, June 16-18. (Photo: )

mySAP All-in-One: IBM Wholesale Distribution Solution
IBM and SAP are presenting a new pre-packaged, accelerated solution for the wholesale distribution industry based on mySAP All-in-One. This offering is available in the United States directly from IBM, with implementation services provided by IBM Business Consulting Services. IBM Business Partners can complement the solution with the necessary hardware and software in addition to receiving fees for lead opportunities closed by IBM. Customers deploying the IBM solutions also will have the ability to leverage IBM Express software and eServers, as well as financing through IBM Global Financing.

The IBM offering is a qualified mySAP All-in-One solution that brings to market the solutions strength of SAP combined with best practices for implementation culled from IBM's deep experience with many of the world's most advanced electrical goods wholesalers, hardware plumbing and heating suppliers, machinery equipment suppliers, and durable goods suppliers. The solution includes the advanced capabilities now required by small and midsize distributors to compete effectively, such as integrated electronic data interchange (EDI) and complex warehouse and inventory management. With pricing starting at $300,000 for implementation, the solution can be implemented in as few as eight to twelve weeks.

"IBM is focused on delivering solutions that will allow small and midsize businesses to be responsive to the needs of their customers, suppliers, and partners," said Cynthia Mitchell, vice president, IBM Business Consulting Services. "Businesses of all sizes are looking at their internal processes to understand how they can operate more efficiently. This new solution from IBM and SAP is designed to speed that process and bring IBM's deep industry expertise to the wholesale distribution marketplace."

Pressman Toys Corporation, the third-largest games company in the United States, is among the numerous midsize companies already benefiting from the alliance between SAP and IBM on industry solutions for small and midsize companies. The consumer products industry-specific applications of the solution has helped Pressman Toys address inefficiencies in its supply chain that resulted in excess inventory and also better manage fluctuating demand for its games in the marketplace.

"Having a better view of the marketplace allows Pressman Toys to predict product demand, understand the financial implications, and respond quickly to meet it," said Mark Koscinski, vice president treasurer, Pressman Toys. "Working with IBM and SAP to quickly implement this solution, we are now poised to be even more responsive to our customers needs while understanding the implications to our bottom line."

SAP® Business One -- The American Express® Edition Now Available
At SAPPHIRE '03, SAP and American Express also announced the release of the first vertical solution developed by American Express based on SAP Business One. The solution, SAP Business One -- The American Express Edition for Wholesale Distribution, is designed for companies with less complex needs looking for easy and affordable yet powerful solutions. It includes integrated warehouse management, electronic data interchange (EDI), sales tax, credit card authorization, and document management capabilities. SAP Business One -- The American Express Edition can be implemented in as quickly as a few weeks.

"American Express and SAP bring a unique solution to small and midsize businesses," said Tom Meador, CEO and president, American Express Tax and Business Services Inc. "By horizontally and vertically integrating leading technology solutions with SAP Business One, we have created one product that truly is greater than the sum of its parts. As a result, the American Express Edition for Wholesale Distribution, combined with our rapid deployment methodology, can help companies get up and running quickly and effectively and benefit from a speedy return on their investment."

American Express Business Finance is now offering small and midsize companies the ability to finance their purchases over a thirty-six-month period at zero percent interest. The solution is sold, delivered, and supported by American Express Tax and Business Services Inc. and can be delivered preinstalled on the IBM eServer(TM) xSeries(TM) platform. In addition, American Express and IBM are working together to leverage their respective customer support and business partner programs.

"In the wholesale distribution business there is little correlation, if any, between the size of a company and its business objectives," said Gary Fromer, senior vice president, SAP America, Inc. "Small and midsize distributors need to do business with the same companies as their larger peers, and they need the same tools to accomplish those goals. The completeness and affordability SAP is offering through alliances with two of the most trusted names in technology and business services -- IBM and American Express -- will provide wholesale distributors with a distinct advantage. With these offerings, SAP raises the stake for solutions in the wholesale distribution market by meeting the needs of companies over the entire life cycle of their business."

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