MarketMile Leverages AmEx Connection

Two purchasing card customers sign up for provider's e-procurement services

San Francisco, CA  March 11, 2002  Two new customers for e-procurement services provider and American Express offshoot MarketMile demonstrate that even in the New Economy, it's good to have Old Economy friends.

The solution provider announced today that Vought Aircraft Industries and MGE UPS SYSTEMS have signed up to use MarketMile's e-procurement services, and, in both cases, the provider's relationship with American Express proved a boon.

MarketMile's e-procurement service, targeted at mid-market companies, combines a hosted e-procurement application with a network of preselected and buyer-requested suppliers with the goal of automating and streamlining a buying organization's procurement process.

Following a 30-day implementation, Dallas-based Vought Aircraft, the world's largest independent supplier of aerostructures for military and commercial use, currently has a core group of users trained and processing transactions on the MarketMile system. The $1 billion company, which employs more than 5,000 people at five locations, plans to implement the system across all its sites and have 200 users using the solution within three quarters.

Vought had implemented the American Express Corporate Purchasing Card program in the third quarter of 2000 to help gain greater control over the company's spending on indirect goods and services. Vought subsequently implemented American Express' financial integration and reconciliation software, AccountingLink, in the first quarter of 2001. MarketMile, a company founded by American Express, must have seemed like a natural choice to provide Vought's e-procurement service.

"We were introduced to MarketMile through our existing procurement card relationship with American Express," said Kendall Lake, manager of materiel e-business strategies at Vought. ."Vought was looking for an e-procurement solution that would provide spend aggregation and cost comparison, yet be highly user friendly. Integrating MarketMile with our procurement card program was a step toward creating a paperless 'req to check' process for non-production spending."

MGE UPS SYSTEMS, a global provider of power quality solutions designed to increase the availability and uptime of mission-critical applications or processes, turned to MarketMile for help controlling and reducing its spending. MGE was also introduced to MarketMile through American Express, having been an AmEx purchasing card customer since 2000.

"Because of their relationship with American Express, we felt a sense of trust and security in choosing MarketMile as our e-procurement provider," said Ron Wilson, purchasing director at MGE, which maintains 37 subsidiaries, 150 sales and customer service offices and production facilities throughout the world.

Wilson added that MGE liked MarketMile's pricing structure and speedy deployment cycle. The company enabled a pilot group of 15 users in just over six weeks, giving them access to three key suppliers through the MarketMile service.

Christopher Williams, vice president of client services for MarketMile, noted that the solution provider is using to its best advantage its relationship with American Express and a recently announced partnership with IBM Global Services. "We are building on the strength of our strategic relationships with American Express and IBM Global Services to further increase the value we bring to our customers," Williams said. "We believe the combination of IBM's sourcing expertise, MarketMile's unique delivery model and American Express's leading corporate payment capabilities are the right recipe for success."