NutraBid Profile

September 1, 2000

3 Min Read
NutraBid Profile


NutraBid

67 Walnut Ave., Ste. 205
Clark, NJ 07066
Phone: (732) 382-6565
Fax: (732) 382-6363
E-mail: [email protected]
Website: www.nutrabid.com
CEO: Subhash Makhija
COO/CTO: Jagadish Turimella
President: Roopa Makhija
Founded 1999, live launch April 2000
Mission Statement: To help the nutraceutical industry profitably participate in the B2B e-commerce revolution through state-of-the-art digital infrastructure.

INSIDER talked with Roopa Makhija, president, about the strategy of NutraBid.

Q: What are the main services you offer?

A: We have three main service offerings--the electronic marketplace, electronic procurement, and a private electronic catalog. The electronic marketplace encompasses a range of services. In that area, companies can buy and sell ingredients and finished products at a fixed price or using an auction model. We have forward auctions, where the price goes up as buyers bid for products, or reverse auctions, where a buyer will state the top price he will pay and suppliers bid downward. We also have a negotiated e-commerce offering where buyers and sellers can negotiate on multiple parameters to come to an agreement on terms. The electronic marketplace also includes our storefronts, where companies can advertise services, as well as a Product Launch Center. This allows companies to launch ingredients and get feedback from test marketing. In the second service offering, electronic procurement, we conduct private auctions for companies that might not be comfortable opening their buying process to unqualified suppliers. We combine our offline expertise with an online tool to determine the buyer's criteria, create RFPs, pre-select qualified suppliers, and conduct a Web-based live auction. Our $7.5 million auction of 27 products for procurement of raw materials by a large buyer was the first online auction in the nutraceutical industry. Our third service offering is the private electronic catalog. This allows companies to sell products on their own Website using NutraBid's back end technology.

Q: In an increasingly competitive marketplace, what sets you apart?

A: Other companies with electronic, nutraceutical marketplaces commonly focus on just one area. We target the entire value chain in the nutraceutical industry from the suppliers to the manufacturers and distributors all the way to retailers. We offer a range of services for each type of company. This is a neutral forum and we supply services based on the needs of our customers. We also provide in-depth news that is updated two to three times a week in the financial, research, and regulatory areas. Our senior management team is also very strong. Our people have expertise in procurement, in raw materials, in finished products,in e-commerce.

Q: How have you dealt with the issue of security on your site?

A: Our site has very tight security. We are hosted by one of the top web hosting companies, which provides a layer of security and a firewall. All transactions are protected, and there are password requirements and encryption. We conduct due diligence on the companies that register on our site. We have about a 20 percent rejection rate, because we have to ensure the quality of these companies. Our credibility is on the line.

Q: How have you addressed the issue of quality?

A: On our site, we are working with third-party testing labs; in time, we hope to have a rating system for suppliers based on both quality testing issues and reliability. For example, we'll find out whether a supplier is delivering product on time and in the quantity and quality ordered. In our electronic marketplace, companies can post whether they have a certificate of analysis (CofA); many buyers are insisting on that information. We are also working to educate both buyers and sellers about the capabilities of e-commerce. Education will be a key component of the adoption of this technology, and the companies that take advantage of this and are proactive will make progress.

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