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eAuctions have already realised savings of over £2 million

Cable & Wireless, the global telecommunications group, announced today (28 November 2001) that it expects to achieve savings of up to £25 million per year through the implementation of its eProcurement programme. eAuctions, a key component of the eProcurement programme, have already led to substantial savings, estimated at £2.5 million, from three recent auctions over a four month period.

The Cable & Wireless eProcurement programme, comprising the eProcurement system and Procurement Professional eTools such as eAuctions, provides procurement professionals with the online information and tools they need to execute world-class category management, resulting in reduced costs and increased business benefits. The eProcurement system is empowering the business to purchase what it needs when it needs it.

"The business rationale for eProcurement agreed a year ago, was to focus on cost saving and empowering the business," said Martin Ward, SVP Global Procurement, Cable & Wireless. "This has become even more important in the current climate. eProcurement is providing a vehicle to deliver more focused governance over the procurement process, thereby leading to an improvement in our gross margin. eAuctions are the first element of the programme to go live and we are delighted, both with the savings we have realised already and with the high levels of satisfaction our suppliers have expressed with the system."

EAuctions will deliver benefits for both Cable & Wireless and suppliers. Cable & Wireless will benefit from significant cost reduction through real-time supplier competition leading to market-driven pricing. Furthermore, there is increased efficiency and speed of request for quotation (RFQ) process, opportunities for supplier consolidation and access to new improved sources of supply and increased market knowledge. eAuctions open up new business opportunities for suppliers and allow them to benefit from an easier process of quoting for a refined RFQ and fairer competition in the bidding process.

One of the first areas of Cable & Wireless to reap the benefits of an eAuction was energy expenditure. The eAuction process was one of the factors that enabled Cable & Wireless to achieve a 22% reduction in this year's energy expenditure, giving it a saving of £1.4 million.

Dale Wiles, key account manager at London Electricity, who won the bid, said: "The e-auction process allows greater transparency when quoting and gives an instant view on the competitiveness of our quote."

The combined Cable & Wireless and Accenture team rolled out eProcurement capability to the UK in September 2001 and is currently rolling out the programme in the US with 100 supplier catalogues available for online purchase, thus providing 10,000 goods or services to Cable & Wireless electronically. The next phase of the project is to roll out to additional new users in Japan in December and rest of Europe by the middle of next year. Once fully deployed, the system will be able to facilitate business-to-business commerce with over 500 suppliers.

Accenture teamed with Cable & Wireless on this project. Charles Findlay, Partner in Accenture's Supply Chain practice said: "This is one of the best integrated and globally co-ordinated procurement programmes in which Accenture has been involved. By establishing a clear business strategy, engaging external suppliers as well as internal parties and ensuring integration with existing systems, Cable & Wireless is now reaping the rewards eProcurement can bring."

About Cable & Wireless

Cable & Wireless is a major global telecommunications business with revenue of over
£8 billion (US$11 billion) in the year to 31 March 2001 and customers in 70 countries. Cable & Wireless' focus for future growth is on IP (Internet Protocol) and data services and solutions for business customers. It is developing advanced IP networks and value-added services in the US, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region in support of this strategy. With the capability of its global IP infrastructure and its strength in key markets, Cable & Wireless holds a unique position in terms of global coverage and services to business customers.

For more information about Cable & Wireless, go to

David Thain
Cable & Wireless

Sarah Richardson
020 7315 2977
Brodeur Worldwide
01753 790 700

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