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Asia is the fastest growing market in the world, which makes it a great opportunity for European retailers to distribute premium products. Experienced in cross-border trade, the OEX Group and Divante decided to lower the barrier to entry into this market by launching an innovative B2B marketplace complemented with complex export services.
OEX Group is a capital group operating in the modern business services sector. It has been present on the market for 20 years and employs over 1700 people. In that time, OEX Group has become a leader in logistics services for the e-commerce sector, POS materials and loyalty programs, and gained the trust of partners including TOP FMCG and health & beauty companies.
Both OEX Group and Divante have been present on Asian markets for several years now, and, in a move that many may see as exotic, made these markets the base for their game changing project.
WHAT DID THEY NEED?
The idea was to create an easy-to-use tool to expose, promote and sell products worldwide. Cooperating companies decided to launch a modern B2B and B2C marketplace platform which would use logistics and warehouse systems offered within the OEX Group. The solution aimed to serve current and future OEX contractors, possibility to place various orders electronically.
“This project combines the competence of many experts from the OEX Group. We believe that eCommerce and solutions that digitize sales are the future of trade.” - Jerzy Motz, OEX S.A. president
To meet all the necessary needs, the platform had to provide features typical for any marketplace where every supplier has a separate assortment, inventory, and transport costs, and at the same time, the end customer must be able to order products from the collective catalog or directly from the selected suppliers.
To serve this purpose well, the new solution and its management were handed over to the dedicated entity – OEX 24.com.
WHAT DID WE DO?
The OEX Group decided to cooperate with Divante due to their interest in Asian markets, but also due to their experience in creating B2C and B2B eCommerce systems and good knowledge of the platform on which the OEX24.com was to be implemented - Pimcore (Divante is a Pimcore Strategic Partner).
“Collaboration with Divante on the OEX24.com project is based on the efficiency at the very beginning. Project teams work in accordance with the Agile methodology, thanks to which we are able to respond both to the needs of our clients and the dynamically changing realities of the eCommerce market. Thanks to both the professionalism and experience of the Divante project team, the OEX24.com ecosystem is growing rapidly using the world's best practices from the digital market.” – said Konrad Zach, member of the board and head of eCommerce in OEX24.com.
Therefore, Divante took part in the project starting from the product design stage in the field of consulting typical B2C/ B2B functionalities, their role in the eCommerce platform and collecting specific requirements from the OEX team.
Based on the completed business analysis, Divante presented a prototype of a Pimcore-based solution that would fulfill all the requirements, including CMS, DAM and product information management by multiple suppliers (which would later be presented in a unified way in the marketplace). The new system would support B2B sales processes, like asking for a quote or special terms of business, and automatically process orders from many suppliers.
The system was designed so it could be open to changes in market needs and evolve in the future.
Subsequently, Divante’s implementation is one of the most innovative marketplaces due to the selected platform and technologies.
The OEX24.com marketplace platform was built based on the Pimcore 5 eCommerce framework
and provided the ultimate toolset for product information management and multiple basic data.
Thanks to dedicated API gateways, the whole system could be integrated
with existing OEX infrastructure and payment solutions, which included:
Additionally, the Pimcore platform was enriched with dedicated functionalities. The most important features are:
What’s more, OEX24.com is backed by the modern Vue.js framework, which makes the checkout, catalog and user sections’ performance ultrafast and light.
The most interesting functionality is the merchant module, which turns the whole platform into an exceptional marketplace.
The Merchant module can handle many data formats as well as the method of data delivery - e.g. XML via URL, CSV downloaded from FTP server, data downloaded by REST API. In addition, the product in each system can be described in a completely different way, even though the eCommerce platform expects standardized data.
The Merchant module allows you to map product data from the supplier to the product data used in the eStore. In addition, if a given product is offered by more than one supplier, the mechanism allows you to combine stock levels and monitor purchase prices.
The smooth running of OEX24.com is ensured in the established SLA conditions, including load balancer with two application servers and a separate worker server – and the whole process is supported by Divante.
WHAT ARE THE RESULTS?
Working together, OEX Group and Divante developed an innovative and flexible eCommerce platform. The OEX24.com platform is connected to other trading services offered by OEX Group which makes it a complex end-to-end solution.
OEX24.com is a user-friendly marketplace, designed with the aim of digitizing B2B trade. It was launched at the end of February 2019.
“Our main business goal is to develop both the platform and related services in close correlation with the current needs of our key producers and customers. In addition, in the business development strategy for the coming months, we put a strong focus on business development on foreign markets, i.e. Asia, ZEA, Europe and many others.” – said Konrad Zach, member of the board and head of eCommerce at OEX24.com.
Companies entering the platform can benefit in multiple ways. First of all, the platform allows companies to build an online presence in a very short time and helps to present offers dedicated to specific markets (that’s thanks to multi-language and multi-currency features). Products added to OEX24.com can be displayed in the common marketplace or on a separate brand page which gives both the power of a product’s category and supports a brand’s identity.
Secondly, the OEX24.com marketplace performs all trade-related operations on domestic and international markets. Within a custom developed vendor’s module, OEX24.com enables supplementary features including selective payment methods, inquiries automation, and the opportunity to create dedicated tools for servicing a vendor’s own customers for large entities or purchasing groups.
Lastly, the newly launched marketplace opens access to vast knowledge regarding exports, taxes, and certifications needed to introduce products on a new market and offer them on OEX24.com.
In the first weeks from the launch, the marketplace registered transactions on the European market, as well as between Europe and Asia.
“Despite the short time on the market, we have already registered transactions on the European market, as well as between Europe and Asia” - Artur Wojtaszek, a board member of OEX SA and the president of the board of OEX24.com.
The project took over two years and provided advanced features to businesses worldwide, but Divante and the OEX Group are not stopping there. The possibilities offered by worldwide markets are endless, and both companies have plans to adapt OEX24.com even more closely to fast-changing market needs.
WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD?
The OEX Group is actively building foreign relations and is acquiring local partners in Asian countries, which facilitates the implementation of processes related to the sale and promotion on foreign markets.
In the near future, companies entering OEX24.com can expect to benefit from features dedicated to Chinese and Arabian markets as well as the international trade credits offer.