BTB Executives Look to Enhance Trading Networks, Report Says

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More than one-quarter of business-to-business executives said they would add features to their private trading networks in the next 12 months in order to allow companies to use collaborative online activities such as inventory-level monitoring and product design, a research report issued this week by Jupiter Media Metrix said.


The report surveyed 406 BTB executives at companies of all sizes.


Private trading networks are a new tool designed to link the interests of buyers, suppliers and distribution partners.


The report, titled "Private Trading Networks Promise a New World of Collaboration," predicted that the addition of collaborative applications to private trading networks will outpace the addition of transaction-focused enhancements, as only 20 percent of BTB executives indicated that they will focus on procurement features.


Analysts at Jupiter, New York, said the shift from transaction models to collaborative private trading networks will offer companies the best short-term return on investment by allowing buyers and sellers to improve the quality and efficiency of their products and manufacturing before meeting longer-term goals for cost-effective BTB transactions.


The report also found that:


· BTB leaders plan to use private trading networks to monitor suppliers' inventory levels in the next 12 months.


· Sixty-one percent of executives cited closer supplier relationships as a key function of private trading networks.


· Despite their benefits, private trading networks face resistance from corporate users who are concerned about data privacy.


· Thirty-six percent of respondents said concerns over sharing sensitive data with business partners were the main barrier to using private trading networks, while only 24 percent consider integrating existing technology investments a barrier.


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