Corporate Express, Inc, is the world's largest business-to-business supplier of essential office and computer products and services, with 2001 sales of approximately $5 billion in North America alone. In North America, Corporate Express operates more than 300 facilities including 52 distribution centers and has 12,800 employees.

Corporate Express sells to more than 40,000 customers through a variety of touch points, each with customized product information requirements. In order to adapt to accelerating product life cycles and shorter sales cycles, Corporate Express needed to implement a product information management (PIM) solution that would streamline its existing systems and processes, and support increased product offerings and new features and functionality required by the company's burgeoning e-commerce efforts.

The existing PIM system involved manual processes and several internally developed tools, and was time- and labor-intensive. Corporate Express managed their data using a corporate item master (CIM) system and a customized Oracle database with a Microsoft Access front end (APRD). Both systems received data from multiple sources in a variety of formats, adding time and complexity to the product information management process. Additionally, the volume of product data that needed to be managed was growing exponentially. As a result, Corporate Express decided to eliminate the existing APRD system and consolidate the various rich content authoring and management into a complete, flexible product information repository that could provide additional functionality, such as a publisher with multiple views and an attribute-rich system that could support parametric searches and product comparisons.

After considering many different options, including a solution that required substantial in-house development, we determined that Trigo Technologies, Inc. was the one vendor that could provide the PIM functionality we needed without custom development. Trigo's extensible platform met all of Corporate Express's requirements and clearly demonstrated the ability to expand and grow with the company.

With Trigo Enterprise, our team could implement a PIM strategy that supported the company's e-business goals. The new system could be easily integrated into the company's existing IT infrastructure to interface with its ERP and multiple e-procurement systems. The Trigo solution enabled Corporate Express to aggregate product information from a variety of disparate sources for publication into E-Way, its customer-facing e-business environment, while maintaining data integrity through easy-to-use business rule validation. The Trigo solution also works with Corporate Express' Documentum system. Trigo sends product data and image names to Documentum, where they are managed, and Documentum publishes them to E-Way.

The Trigo system's ability to publish and update catalogs to accommodate exceptions and new requirements, support multiple taxonomies and easily add fields was a strong selling point. However, it was Trigo's offering of seamless integration with webMethods that closed the deal for Corporate Express, which has standardized on webMethods across the enterprise.

In less than 90 days, Corporate Express deployed Trigo Enterprise to centralize and publish up-to-date, rich catalog content regularly to approximately 20 different platforms. By centralizing product data, Corporate Express was able to organize the same number of items in a way that allowed the company to take on more data elements, enabling it to increase the volume of product information in the system without having to hire additional staff. We credit our success to the switching of systems into Trigo with a phased approach, rather then doing it all at once, and recommend this helpful tip to others looking to deploy a PIM Solution.

Corporate Express maintains over 230,000 stock-keeping units (SKUs) in E-Way, and the company has leveraged Trigo's PIM capabilities to support more than $4 million in average daily sales. Corporate Express is on track to exceed $1 billion in B2B online sales this year.

By centralizing the content and the workflow of PIM processes, the Trigo solution enabled Corporate Express to increase productivity by 20 percent in its Web catalog authoring and syndication processes; with the increased productivity, Corporate Express has been able to feature more products. Based on these results, Corporate Express plans to incrementally consolidate all internal and external product content management systems into the Trigo data repository.

Trigo Technologies, Inc., is the leading provider of Product Information Management software and services. Trigo Product Center is the first comprehensive Product Information Management solution that allows companies to exchange, manage, analyze and deliver comprehensive, relevant, and unique product information via multiple channels across and beyond the enterprise. Global retailers, CPG firms, manufacturers, distributors and other large corporations have chosen Trigo to increase speed to market, grow sales, reduce expenses and enhance customer service through the improvement of content, quality and processes around product information. Trigo's growing customer base comprises many Global 1000 companies, including Alpha Purchase, Buhrmann, Corporate Express, Moore, Royal Philips Electronics, Staples, and xpedx.

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