Thao Le

ITS 380

Professor Shin-ping Tucker



Chapter 12:  B2B E-commerce: Supply Chain Management and Collaborative Commerce

Case Study

1.      If you were a small chemical company, what concerns would you have about joining Elemica?

If I am a small chemical company, I would be concerned whether I am able to respond to requests for a large quantities of commodities that is requested by partners. Although small and medium company don’t have to have an ERP system to connect to Elemica, they still require some level of technological edification even to use the online portal. Elemica provides a Web portal for those companies not as technically sophisticated as the larger global chemical companies. For all firms, Elemica reduces the load heavily on IT staff. In fact, one of the missions of Elemica is to help companies do more with fewer resources—including IT staff.


2.      Elemica provides a community for participants where they can transact, coordinate, and cooperate to produce products for less. Yet these firms also compete with one another when they sell chemicals to end-user firms in the automobile, airline, and manufacturing industries. How is this possible?

The chemical industry is related to a long history of firms buying/selling from each other. All firms in the industry at one point or another end up with spare inventory they would like to sell, or come short on specific chemicals preventing order execution. The Elemica hub is perceived as a neutral trading platform where all can benefit from lower-cost-to-serve, greater efficiencies, and overall more efficient operations that can serve customers better. By keeping bids and quotations anonymous, and the community fairly large and open, members can get a sense of “market price” and available quantities quite easily without revealing their names.

3.      How does the purchase of Elemica by Thoma Bravo, a private equity firm, change how Elemica fits into the B2B framework illustrated in Figure 10.12?

I think that the acquisition of Elemica by Thoma Bravo will only affect Elemica in a positive way that hopefully keeps Elemica’s position as an industry leader in providing communication, coordinating, and information sharing for B2B transactions. I don’t think that their strategy will change, the only difference with the acquisition will be that Thoma Bravo will work even harder for Elemica to attract new customers and possibly expand their service into new areas. The CEO of Elemica said that “Thoma Bravo’s exceptional track record and proven expertise in our industry will enable Elemica to further capitalize on its growth and leadership”.



1.   Choose an industry and a B2B vertical market maker that interests you. Investigate the site and prepare a report that describes the size of the industry served, the type of Net marketplace provided, the benefits promised by the site for both suppliers and purchasers, and the history of the company. You might also investigate the bias (buyer versus seller), ownership (suppliers, buyers, and independents), pricing mechanism(s), scope and focus, and access (public versus private) of the Net marketplace.

I’m interested in Toyota Company, an automobile company market. The company only focuses itself on automobiles such as auto-mechanics and manufactures. Toyota is a large corporation that serves wide automobile market in the   entire world dominated with Japan and United States; this industry demands medium capital investment and high technology modification thus requiring real supply chain and refined manufacturing amenities.

The type of the net market provided is E-distributors that contains cataloged electronics that shows products of a number of manufacturers and owned by independent agents. A number of benefits are also provided by the site such as low cost of goods and services, decreased cost of operation and decreased transaction charges.

The net marketplace is characterized by interests that benefit both buy-side and sell-side, suppliers, independents, and buyers, meaning bias is avoided in the net marketplace. The pricing mechanism is fixed-price cataloged. Thus, the price for the products of the company is maintained at a stable price and focused on vertical markets. Which has entrance to open markets, and always seeks permission from relevant authorities to enter into private markets.


2.   Examine the website of one of the e-distributors listed in figure 12.9, and compare and contrast it to one of the websites listed for e-procurement net marketplaces. If you were a business manager of a medium-sized firm, how would you decide where to purchase your indirect inputs from an e-distributor or an e-procurement net market place?

            E-procurement net market place as well as the e-distributor make use of computer integrated Business to Business technique. Both also types of net market place.

The dissimilarity comes in whereby e-procurement concentrates mostly on value chain management, e-distributor system emphasizes majorly on increased network distribution system to boost market segment.

Indirect inputs or the (MRO) which includes maintenance and repair of goods. The best goods are purchased by the organization just when their demand is realized. Inputs of that type are bought and delivered on spot when the need arises hence E-distributor kind of agreement is appropriate. Here the buyer is guaranteed instant delivery from the supplier distribution channel.