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B2B – Alstom’s StationOne marketplace is becoming a benchmark in the rail industry

Blog
3rd March 2020

The B2B rail sector is growing thanks to StationOne marketplace. This Alstom subsidiary connects buyers and vendors around the world. It’s a human and technical challenge that relies on the services of Webhelp Payment Services, as Axel Mouquet, CEO of Webhelp Payment Services, explains.

“The marketplace for railway professionals”: that’s how StationOne marketplace – dedicated to buyers and vendors of rail services – presents itself internationally.

For Didier Bohin, StationOne’s President, sourcing the right product for the right price,and at the expected delivery time, is only part of the equation.

That’s where the idea came from to create a marketplace that could handle the complexity of these e-procurement operations for parts and equipment, in addition to services and maintenance. Though it started with rail, in the long term, the platform will target the international B2B mobility sector.

A particularly complex B2B marketplace project

Thanks to StationOne, a national railway or a local tram operator can now buy the parts they need, with all the benefits of a one stop shop platform.

However, e-procurement in the rail sector has to fulfil particularly high technical, security, and regulatory requirements. And regarding the catalogue, this raises a number of specific issues.

“In addition to  complexity, StationOne had to face with international payments issue. This was totally managed by Webhelp Payment Services,  dealing with all payment flows: incoming payments (from buyers), billing buyers on behalf of vendors, and transferring money to vendors”, explains Axel Mouquet, CEO of Webhelp Payment Services.

Webhelp Payment Services also manages some international vendor onboarding. This includes KYC and AML (Anti-Money Laundering) operations to comply with international payment regulations, including automated and human verification procedures and verification of beneficial owners.

Full management of the order-to-cash chain

“In responding to such complex, demanding projects, the technological building blocks are just one factor that contributes towards success. Cooperation and long-term support are required. It is also important to be able to put your customers in touch with other customers and stakeholders in this tiny world of the national and international B2B marketplace ecosystem”, Axel Mouquet points out.

That’s because the order-to-cash chain is very long, from a customer’s order, to generating and consolidating invoices, through to paying the seller and the marketplace operator!

In practical terms, it involves matching up purchase orders, payments, and the corresponding invoices. However, during these reconciliation stages, we are faced with the standard B2B issues: totals or rounded amounts that don’t exactly match, grouped or staggered payments, managing credit notes, unusual transactions, etc.

Lastly, StationOne benefits from the easy management and readability of a single account, fully managed by Webhelp Payment Services, as required by regulations.

“It is up to us to manage and continue to guarantee the entire financial process. Ambitious, efficient and integrated, it is clear that StationOne is becoming a model for B2B marketplaces dedicated to the rail sector”, Axel Mouquet concludes.

 

For more information :

B2B Marketplaces – Limits of the Marketplace model for Global Account customers (1/2)

B2B – Marketplace or Drop Shipping: It is urgent not to choose (2/2)

Trends 2020 – Upply is digitalising the supply chain and integrating Webhelp Payment Services solutions!



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