17 February 2005 | David Arminas
Accenture last month completed the purchase of Geneva-based CPGmarket.com for an undisclosed sum.
The consultancy has also secured guarantees from the seven finished goods manufacturers - including Danone, L'Oréal and Nestlé - that created the marketplace to remain as users.
As part of the deal, the companies have promised to increase the number of suppliers using the marketplace from 140, said Jaume Ferrer, managing partner for the supply chain practice at Accenture.
Its founders have committed themselves to bringing 1,400 raw material and packaging suppliers on board in three years.
Accenture also wants 10 to 12 manufacturers registered with the CPGmarket.com service.
Ferrer told SM that Accenture had not bought CPGmarket.com "to sell in several years for a massive profit".
He added: "There are no plans at the moment to move it from Geneva and the 50 employees will stay with Accenture."
CPGmarket.com was set up in 2000 to cater for e-sourcing, e-requisitioning and other supply chain activities, including stock management and the exchange of commercial documents online.
It uses systems from SAP and webMethods.
The programme has handled over e5 billion in the last five years.
Ferrer said his company bought the exchange because it offers company-to-company collaboration, which is an expanding market, and now it can offer the service to clients.
Nigel Montgomery, European research director at analysts AMR Research, said only time will tell what Accenture's plans are.
It is unclear whether the consultancy had bought the exchange mainly for its own clients or whether it planned to invest in it to support long-term growth.
CPGmarket.com's users include Coca Cola, Mahou and Henkel.