National Network of Regional B2B Hubs Planned

Andersen Consulting is teaming up with to help build a national
network of 20 regional horizontal hubs, each anchored by a regional utility,
and aimed at establishing a new paradigm in B2B e-procurement marketplaces.

The cross-industry “horizontals” will be modeled after the plans for the
first regional hub announced by
Potomac Electric Power Co. May 10, which will
facilitate the buying and selling of everything from paper clips to temporary
labor services in the Washington-Baltimore region.

“With our extensive knowledge of the regional business community, we will be
able to facilitate e-commerce in the region, helping local businesses lower
their operating costs and making our region more competitive,” said Dennis
Wraase, Potomac Electric president and chief financial officer. founder and Chief Executive Officer Steven A. Mitnick said he envisions as many
as 40 U.S. markets eventually will be served by regional hubs. Andersen
Consulting said it will draw upon its experience in B2B implementation to
make each hub function smoothly from the start. Financial arrangements
between the companies were not disclosed.

“Every regional hub in the network represents an attractive
opportunity for Andersen Consulting and the regional utility partner,” said
John Bladon, a senior partner in the firm’s supply-chain management practice.

The regional horizontal hubs will enable regional universities, hospitals,
school districts and businesses of all types and sizes to buy all the kinds
of goods and services they need to operate using the efficiency and buying
power of e-procurement, Mitnick said. said it expects to announce the second regional hub in the
network by mid-July.

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