How Much Are We Bidding for This Superb System?

Auction sites succeed or fail based on the quality and mix of their products. Olsale, headquartered in Tel Aviv, founded in 1998, quickly made its mark in this hotly competitive field, operating as many as six sales arenas on the Internet, with each auction lasting about 15 minutes. By its fourth year of operation, Olsale had become Israel’s leading public-auction Internet site, with sales of more than $30 million and 75,000 transactions.
But to ensure its continued growth, the company needed an IT solution that would provide increased capabilities, ranging from transaction management – submission of bids through transfer of purchased goods – to detailed but simple-to-analyze reports on purchase patterns, profit margins, and marketing focuses.
“We require complex reports that analyze sales monthly and seasonally”, explains Eli Mordechai, Olsale’s chief financial officer, “and we rely on the data to help determine our product mix and the industries we will emphasize and strengthen on the site.”
To meet this need at a reasonable price, it required ultra-efficient off-the-shelf technology that can be rapidly and cost-effectively implemented – and grow with the company. SAP Business One enabled the company to seamlessly integrate a complex data collection and management system with all the company’s business processes.
“Just a year after we deployed SAP Business One in December 2001”, says Mordechai, “Olsale closed 2002 with sales of about $41 million and 100,000 completed transactions – a jump of 33 per cent. Such growth would have been unthinkable without SAP Business One.”
Currently, SAP Business One has 75 users at Olsale’s three branches and its distribution facilities. The system proved itself user-friendly for personnel at all levels, from the supply room employee to the customer-service team to senior officials in accounting and administration. A half day’s training was enough for the entire company, using a Windows interface integrated with Microsoft’s office-management suite.
According to Mordechai, SAP Business One paid for itself in the first month, enabling immediate savings on the workforce required to process bids received at the site. Now, each service employee completes 100 transactions daily, instead of the 15 to 20 before SAP Business One. Previously, completing each bid required 15 to 20 minutes. With SAP Business One, the time was reduced to two minutes.
The public-auction site’s business process management is integrated through open application-interface software. At a single click, the details of completed transactions are transferred simultaneously to accounting, collections, supply chain management, and customer delivery.
“SAP Business One met all our expectations – and went much farther”, says Mordechai.