IDC Identifies SMEs as the Next Growth Engine for Supply Chain Services

AMSTERDAM, APRIL 23, 2001 – Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are set to drive the market for supply chain management (SCM) services in the medium term. The current economic climate is causing companies to focus on operational efficiency and reduced business transaction costs, and with only a few services organizations currently addressing the SME space, IDC believes this market will be the next growth driver for SCM services.


"Players in this field will need to provide packaged services built around collaboration and eprocurement solutions to take advantage of this market opportunity," said Dominique Raviart, senior analyst for IDC’s European Services research group.

Current SCM services seem to center on large enterprises, and solutions tend to be very expensive. "In certain countries, such as France, such projects are implemented almost module by module or broken down into three-monthly steps, lasting up to 24 months," Raviart added. "Large system integrators and consultancy organizations tend to look at large enterprises only."

New service opportunities such as eprocurement which can provide economies with administrative procurement costs and product life-cycle management have emerged in the supply chain field, and, in the medium term, solutions are appearing with a lower price tag that satisfies the needs of small businesses.

"The mid-market is likely to be addressed by large service organizations, so the sweet spot for SME specialists is finding projects that are too small for these players but big enough to be profitable for organizations with lower operating costs," Raviart said.

IDC’s report Supply Chain Services: Opportunities in the SME Market? (IDC #PM01H) examines the SCM services market in Western Europe and highlights the strategies of 16 players, how they view the SME market, and what scope remains for new and existing players in the services field. This report pinpoints the opportunities provided by SCM applications and how they differ from those of other service players. To purchase this report, contact your local IDC office.

About IDC

IDC delivers dependable, high-impact insights and advice on the future of ebusiness, the Internet, and technology to help organizations make sound business decisions. IDC forecasts worldwide markets and trends and analyzes business strategies, technologies, and vendors, using a combination of rigorous primary research and in-depth competitive analysis. IDC provides global research with local content through more than 700 analysts in 43 countries worldwide. IDC's customers comprise the world's leading IT suppliers, IT organizations, ebusiness companies, and the financial community. Additional information can be found at

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