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Van Leeuwen Buizen and her smart online catalog

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E-catalog ExxonMobil

Van Leeuwen Buizen needed a handy, simple online application that worked intuitively.

Van Leeuwen Buizen is ExxonMobil’s preferred supplier. To optimally collaborate with other suppliers and service providers within major projects, Acorel developed the E-Catalog for this oil giant, an online catalog based on .NET and AngularJS.

About Van Leeuwen Buizen and ExxonMobil

Van Leeuwen Buizen, founded in 1924, is an internationally operating trading company. The company specializes in the distribution of carbon steel pipes, fittings, flanges, elbows, valves, and bar steel.

With 41 locations in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Australia and North America, the company ensures that materials are quickly available around the world. Van Leeuwen Buizen supplies oil companies, but also furniture makers, the transport industry, stand builders, the precision engineering industry, and shipbuilders.

As a market leader in pipes and tube applications, Van Leeuwen Buizen carries out assignments for oil producer ExxonMobil. “Projects like that can be quite extensive,” says John van Schaijk, Corporate IT manager at Van Leeuwen Buizen. “For example, when we supply materials for a drilling platform or a refinery, you are not only dealing with the client, but also with all kinds of external parties, who all have their own wishes, planning, specifications and price agreements.”

Excel file that contains all the prices

The prices and specifications of all materials that Van Leeuwen Buizen can supply to ExxonMobil were listed in a large Excel file. That file was used in different countries and by different parties. That approach was far from ideal. Van Schaijk: “For example, it could happen that someone changed something, but then forgot to send the correct document.” As a result, it could happen that different variants of the same list were created. With all its consequences.” Van Leeuwen Buizen therefore needed a handy, simple online application in which the selected products for the project can be viewed and which can be used, among other things, to create quotations for ExxonMobil’s projects.

E-Catalog based on .NET

Van Leeuwen Buizen did not want to say goodbye to the datasheet in Excel. Van Schaijk: “We came up with the idea to put a layer over it. We presented this case to various parties. Acorel immediately became concrete and immediately saw opportunities.”

“With relatively little knowledge, the E-Catalog is easy to use. Thanks to this application, we now work a lot more efficiently.”

Share information worldwide in a simple and structured way.

Van Leeuwen Buizen uses, amongst other applications, SAP Business One and SAP ECC. Acorel developed an online application based on .NET and AngularJS that, although not linked to the SAP systems of Van Leeuwen Buizen, does use relevant data from SAP. All necessary data from the SAP systems are exported to an input document – ​​comparable to the ‘old’ Excel sheet. That document is then imported into the application.

Within this platform – the E-Catalog – Van Leeuwen can share information worldwide in a very simple and structured manner. The process to request quotes, among other things, is now truly integrated and automated via the online application.

A clear data workflow

Building and integrating the E-Catalog only took one and a half month. The platform is now running at full speed. Thanks to the E-Catalog, all parties involved have access to the most actual prices, planning, and specifications. The application is user-friendly and fool proof. For example, prices are displayed in different currencies per location.

“Risks of wrong deliveries have been reduced to a minimum. The costs of an incorrect delivery can lead to claims.”

The solution enforces a clear workflow. Van Schaijk: “With relatively little knowledge, the E-Catalog is easy to use. Thanks to this application, we now work a lot more efficiently. Moreover, the chance of wrong deliveries is now much smaller. That is crucial, also for our customer ExxonMobil. You prevent their projects from being delayed. The tool is also an improvement financially because the costs of an incorrect delivery can lead to claims. Thanks to Acorel’s E-Catalog, those risks are now reduced to a minimum.”

Clear plan, clear communication

Van Schaijk looks back on the project with pleasure. “Acorel had a clear plan, a clear timeline and excellent communication. We made the choice for Acorel based on cooperation, mindset, approach, and quality. They showed very quickly with a demo what was possible. In addition, they contributed ideas about the way in which this application can be further expanded in the future and linked to other systems and information sources. We do not rule out that we will also roll out this system for other customers.”