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GARDNER, Kansas (June 9, 2016) – DistributorCentral (DC) (PPAI: 220404 | UPIC: DC) recently launched a solution for suppliers to host their inventory data at no cost in the standards specified at
Development began soon after the 2015 PPAI Tech Summit, with Alpi and Zorrel being the first suppliers to start using when it went live to the industry in March of 2016.
While the inventory standard has proven to be a fantastic tool for suppliers to share inventory data electronically with distributors, it was difficult to encourage adoption among suppliers who might not have the technical expertise on staff to build the service. It was that barrier to entry that encouraged DC’s IT director, Chris Schlemmer, to come up with a solution to address the needs of these suppliers. Under Schlemmer’s direction, DC built and launched a service whereby a supplier can easily upload inventory data to DC in a simple, text-based format or by using a pre-built app (downloadable from DC) which can be installed locally on a computer located at the supplier’s facility. From there, DC is able to “re-broadcast” the inventory.
Any distributor or service provider in the industry can access that supplier’s inventory data by consuming DC’s web service, just as they would when retrieving inventory data directly from a supplier who hosts their own inventory web service. Also, since DC provides technology tools free to the industry, every distributor now has access to real-time inventory information. Inventory data is automatically shown on the 8,000 distributor e-commerce websites hosted by DC, as well as its internal product research and presentation tools.
As an additional benefit to users who are interested in integrating directly with DC’s web service, any distributor with a DC login and API key can retrieve inventory data from every DC supplier using the same credentials, eliminating the need to hit multiple supplier web services and track multiple sets of credentials.
“DC’s ability to quickly launch an inventory web service on behalf of a supplier can save a supplier an immense amount of time and money that would have otherwise been spent developing their own inventory web service,” said Schlemmer. “The initial investment in time and effort on DC’s part was an investment that will continue to help service our clients and promote enhanced technology and integration solutions long into the future.”
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