B2B Project Flourishing in Europe, Coming to CONUS
Since the debut of the Exchange Business Delivery System’s website in Europe in June, U.S. government agencies in Germany, the United Kingdom, Poland, Italy, Belgium and Turkey have ordered $1.6 million in goods from office supplies to military tactical gear.
The first delivery — nearly $1,850 in staplers, copier paper, writing paper, tape, printer cartridges — arrived on the doorstep of the Department of Defense’s Lakenheath Middle School in early June 2016, three days after an administrator placed the order on the business-to-business site.
That’s music to the ears of Hunter Cole and Gustavo Perez, who manage the Exchange’s business-to-business (B2B) initiative.
“These customers would have had to go outside the gate to buy their supplies, but by ordering through the Exchange’s website, they save 10 percent, plus have their merchandise delivered right to their door,” Cole said. “We want to introduce this website to CONUS in mid-2017 and be able to provide the same cost savings to 373 federal agencies.”
The Army, Air Force, Navy, Defense Commissary Agency, NATO, Landstuhl Army Medical Center, Defense Department schools and even AFN radio network and the Stars & Stripes newspaper comprise the major clients.
Perez said the Exchange Business Delivery System meets several of the Exchange’s strategic priorities: intensify national brands, launch an online store, optimize the supply chain and improve online fulfillment.,a deal with brand-name Office Depot Europe enabled the Exchange to expand its business-to-business products by more than 1,000 items.
U.S. agencies and other organizations that hold government purchasing cards can order:
- Military tactical gear
- Electronics and accessories
- Video and still cameras
- Sporting and camping equipment
- Travel bags and back packs
- Wellness and emergency supplies
- Bedding and linens
- Automotive, cleaning, office and breakroom supplies
- Food and drinks for events
- Hardware and tools
- Washers and dryers
- Gardening tools
“Many of our customers come into our stores every day to shop, and now we offer their agencies and organizations the same service and very competitive pricing,” said Cole. “We first started delivering to only five countries. Now we can deliver anywhere in Europe, right to a customer’s doorstep.”
He expects 2016 revenues to reach $6 million and aims for $10 million in 2017.
“The business-to-business program is another way that the Exchange can demonstrate its relevance to the troops and our sister government agencies,” Cole said.