IBM buys into collaboration

IBM Corp. has plans to expand its portfolio of WebSphere integration middleware with data synchronization software from Trigo Technologies Inc. Big Blue in March announced plans to buy its supply chain partner of nearly three years for an undisclosed amount in a stock transaction. The privately-held Trigo’s expertise is in streamlining collaboration among supply chain partners. Its Product Center software links product-related information such as style, size and color, with transaction terms such as pricing, and then publishes this information to internal enterprise applications and external business-partner systems.

The majority of Trigo’s success has been with retail and consumer packaged goods companies, which struggle to keep track of hundreds of attributes for thousands of products across dozens of applications.

The pending acquisition highlights the growing importance of data integrity in business-to-business transactions. Administrative and paperwork errors are responsible for 13 per cent of the US$46 billion retailers could lose annually to inventory inefficiencies and theft, reveals Ernst & Young.

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