April 22, 2014, 1:44 PM

Already tops in China’s B2B e-commerce, Alibaba.com lands a new global partner

Companies across 40 countries that use Coupa Software’s web-based technology to find and buy from suppliers can now also trade with the millions of sellers on Alibaba.com.

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Coupa Software, whose web technology is used by hundreds of companies to buy from more than 1 million suppliers, will connect its client buyers to an even larger based of sellers through an agreement with Alibaba.com, the China-based portal for business buyers and sellers, the two companies said last week.

Coupa provides cloud-based, or web-hosted, financial management software designed to let companies find suppliers, place orders and manage their procurement expenses. The deal with Alibaba will enable the 400 buyers from 40 countries who already use Coupa’s technology to also find suppliers and manage procurement among the millions of sellers on Alibaba.com.

The agreement with Alibaba, announced at Coupa’s annual Inspire users conference, coincides with Coupa’s recent releases of new software applications for managing procurement processes and inventory. Among the new features in the software applications are tools for multinational companies to more easily manage procurement projects across multiple suppliers in specific regions, and a new mobile application for Apple Inc.’s iOS7 operating system that, among other things, lets users view authorized expenses.

Alibaba.com, operated by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., already serves millions of international buyers who buy online from suppliers based in China. The company notes that cross-border buyers place more than 10,000 orders daily on Alibaba.com, at a combined value of $30 million, the company says.

Moreover, Alibaba.com has become increasingly popular in recent years among buyers outside of China. In the past three years, U.S. buyers have increased to 7 million from 2 million and buyers from the U.K. have increased from 360,000 to 1.6 million, Alibaba says. It notes that, to date, more than 10 million international buyers have sourced merchandise via Alibaba.com.

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