Christian Lanng, Co- Founder & CEOAs a child, Christian Lanng was fond of dismantling and successfully re-assembling his toys. This childhood passion for taking things apart and putting them back together, he says, has helped him solve many questions in the realm of supply chain management. One of the biggest questions plaguing Lanng has been how to “digitize hard-to-process, paper-based invoices from suppliers,” shares Lanng. “What I found was it’s not really a paper problem; because if you’re not connected to the suppliers, it is just the symptom of an inefficient communication process,” he says.
When everything is riding on paper—invoices, purchase orders, checks—it’s hard to manage cash flow in an optimal way, which leads to late payments for suppliers. “Globally, trillions of dollars are locked up due to late payments,” states Lanng. “This interrupts the suppliers and affects the overall market where the consumers won’t get finished goods in time and suppliers witness bankruptcy.”
Lanng’s answer to these issues is Tradeshift, a platform connecting buyers with suppliers worldwide. Tradeshift’s platform helps companies run more efficiently using cloud-based technology to improve processes like invoicing, workflow and supplier financing.
“We deliver real benefits to suppliers by letting them track invoice status from the moment they send it until it’s paid. In turn, enterprises benefit by easily connecting to their supply chains worldwide,” explains Lanng. While other business-to-business “networks” are really just two-way portals for basic administrative tasks, Tradeshift is different. “It isn’t an invoicing tool with a two-way portal tacked on; it’s a robust many-to-many network with deeply integrated capabilities like e-invoicing, collaborative workflow and financial solutions,” he adds.
To further accelerate the supply chain management process, Tradeshift created CloudScan™, a powerful approach to capturing and converting invoice data.
We trail-blazed how companies, big and small, transact, connect and collaborate with each other—creating an efficient supply chain where everybody is a winner
The solution automatically converts invoice PDFs into digital data, letting suppliers send them directly through CloudScan to their customers. “Just provide suppliers with your CloudScan email address, and let us handle the rest,” declares Lanng. CloudScan uses advanced artificial intelligence and machine learning, which means CloudScan improves with every invoice sent. “Our approach allows enterprises to rapidly onboard suppliers and receive more documents electronically, freeing staff from time-consuming, inefficient tasks,” he adds.
Tradeshift has helped many companies build efficient supply chain management systems. Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) Company is a prime example. ADM is a Fortune 500 company that processes 2.5 million invoices each year from suppliers around the globe. “Transaction efficiency is paramount to an organization as large and complex as this, and our Tradeshift platform offered them the full functionality to achieve this efficiency,” says Lanng.
“The addition of ADM to the Tradeshift business platform is a huge endorsement that our vision and strategy to end the cycle of inefficiency at the point of transaction,” he adds.
Amazing things happen when businesses connect and Tradeshift brings all companies, big and small, together to transact, connect and collaborate with each other.