Exapro ERP

Exapro ERP

Building the central brain of a global B2B market place

The worldwide market of used industrial machines

The turnover of global used machinery market counts in hundreds of billions of dollars. Industry machines from small lathes to complete production lines are being shipped between continents every single moment and international traders need effective online tools to operate their highly lucrative business.

EXAPRO + COEX: a promising encounter

Exapro is a company of such a calibre. It was founded in France at the turn of the new millenium as an international online market place for used machinery. The company grew rapidly.

In 2010, the general manager Thomas Bordier searched for a software house that would be able to build from scratch the next generation of their online trading portal and internal information system.

Challenging project? Yes, please!

At that time, we had more than a dozen experienced software engineers and analysts in the house. But, this was big! Numerous processes and multilingual databases with tens of millions of records. Simply said, to create a new software version sounded like a gorgeous challenge.

A chance to redesign the intestines of a globally operating firm is something you don't get every day.

Every month

Never ending list of requirements

We were given a tough list of “musts”. Multilingual and multiple currencies architecture, management of leads and commissions, custom CRM, evaluating tools, auto translations, personalised newsletters etc. The list was long. The heavy-weight nut to crack was to incorporate a multiple-unit measurement system architecture, while paying extra attention to usability and efficiency of backoffice user interface (+20 people use the back office on daily basis - each click counts).

Languages fully translated
Newsletter subscribers
Multiple currency
and measuring

Visitors count in tens of thousands daily, multiple teams of operators
daily dispatche hundreds of tickets and leads - all this is powered by
a robus tailor-made information system.

Analysis and process mapping

We started to prepare a “Vision document” with the client. It was clear that there was no chance to use existing software. Everything had to be made to fit the specific needs of the industry and moreover, to involve the processes that had been optimized throughout the 10 years of the company's existence.

Thousands of hours of development

The schedule was 2 months of analysis, design and architecture and 9-10 months of develepment. When we imagined all the work that had to be done - including final nightmare in data migration and new system deployment on such a busy site - we were seriously considering if we had the capacity to deliver the highest technical quality on time and without any hitches.

“Before the developers started to write the first line of code, we had a precise description of all internal processes, we had definitions of all system entities and attributes. We also had fundamentals of a SEO strategy, since organic search is a crucial part of new leads. ”

Radek Pilmaier, System architect

Precise planning pays back in development

We also created main personas, multiple wireframes, functional prototypes of dozens of application screens and critical system components (including simulation of user dialogs, live links, buttons, actions etc.).

The whole project was broken down into small tasks, milestones. Everything was precisely planned, using gantt diagrams and spreadsheets.

The devil is in the detail

Thanks to the client's trust we had freedom to suggest tweaks and improvements during the development. The new system has reminders, doublechecks at crucial parts. We also created shortcuts and presets for heavy used actions (flash quick quote request feedback). We implemented mouse-over popups on critical places to eliminate clicking and let operators focus on the most important actions.

From supplier to shareholder

The day had come and when we presented the beta version of the interface, we received “standing ovations” from the Exapro sales team. No exaggerations. And this is what we do our work for.

Since this moment everyone was looking forward for the new version even more. The testing phase and deployment went surprisingly well - after 1 year from the first meeting and more than 3 thousands of hours spent, it was here. We went live.

We have been constantly improving the system and implementing new functions. The system architecture is robust enough so we could add many marketing tools and CRM functions, sophisticated custom newslettering module for hundreds of thousands of emails per month and many awesome front-end - back-end integrations.

The most important thing is that Exapro is growing each year and the new information system is a significant part of the success. Leads from the website are constantly growing (while the conversion rate is improving too) and the company is hiring new staff every couple of months.

Both parts were so happy with the work that COEX got an offer from EXAPRO to become a shareholder. It might sound like a Hollywood fairy tale, but since we started to cooperate, both companies have grown together in a magnificent COEXistence.

“They did a really great job, the system is our central brain and it improved our effectivity significantly. Furthermore the whole of our team is using the system on a daily basis and when needed, we are getting 24/7 support from COEX.”

Thomas Bordier, managing director of EXAPRO

In two years we helped to double
the performance of the company

Visits on the
Back office efficiency
+8M €
Sales increase
per year

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