Transparency in procurement processes and the selection of suppliers

Following the merger, the process of integration has been nearly completed with regard to procurement and renegotiation and unification of supply contracts. During the implementation of this process, the closeness of local outsourcers as a criterion for choosing suppliers was also considered. Our relationship with our suppliers was further consolidated and the activity was carried out in compliance with the principles of transparency and fairness.
During 2009, on-line activities saw the participation of some 1,700 suppliers for the Group’s Italian companies.Compared to 2008, the Parent Company’s e-sourcing portal was extended to a larger number of product categories and Group companies.  Individuals and companies wishing to apply to be our suppliers and participate in the negotiation process must register on the portal. Thanks to this system of on-line trading, we have ensured transparency in the relationships we had with our suppliers. Furthermore, the negotiation process is tracked and managed in all its phases: from the supplier selection process to the organisation of the negotiation itself; from the publication of the requisites of the bid to the invitations issued to potential suppliers to participate; from the collection and analysis of the offers to the automated reports and the announcements of the conclusion of the bid.
A pilot project was started in 2009, the aim of which is to complete the e-sourcing portal with a Supplier List, which, among other things, will see the introduction of a suppliers rating system based on criteria of quality and sustainability.
The development of this project provides for the classification of regular suppliers on the basis of economic, financial and technical parameters as well as on environmental and social responsibility.
A new management process of invoices from suppliers in support of the administrative management of expenses, implemented in 2009 and launched early this year, will enhance the process in terms of monitoring activities, wider visibility of the documents received from our suppliers, greater traceability of documents, regular monitoring of the various stages of processing and simplification of the activities, which will lead to the improvement of contractual payment times.
Lastly, the information stored on IT media will allow for the elimination of the paper archives, resulting in a lower impact on the environment.