More than 100 textile French companies exchange regularly electronic data which are eBIZ compatible through the EcolTex collaborative platform set up by the IT solution provider Schaeffer Productique.

The number of connected companies has grown significantly since last June when 76 companies were reported as being connected. Exchanged messages include: purchase orders, deliveries and invoices within groups of companies (contractors /sub-contractors) which are mostly French but also reach out to other European countries.

The impressive growth in end-users and above all the benefits of standardized digital data exchange within the supply chain were presented by companies to journalists at the press conference held in Premiere Vision on 18 September.

At the so called point de press held in the local language, the representatives of the IT developer Schaeffer Productique and those of three textiles companies, DEVEAUXSPRINTEX and PHILEA, elaborated on the benefits achieved which included: the high added value of digital connection with business partners, the platform characteristics, the power of standardization.

Textiles companies insisted on the gains in terms of timequality and control of the information including invoicing and traceability.

Schaeffer Productique has autonomously chosen the eBIZ specifications since the initial set up of the EcolTex collaborative platform. The later has been set up under the EcolTex project which is financially supported by the French Government DGCIS under the programme TIC & PME 2015.

A donor representative explained the framework conditions driving the french authorities to support digital connections for SMEs within supply chains. Key reasons focus on the, still, low diffusion of digital integration (approximately one out of ten companies with more than 10 employees) in spite of the crucial importance of digital communications in companies’ export and growth.

In its closing remarks Euratex, the European Textile and Apparel Confederation, welcomed the growing use of the EcolTex platform which concretely boosts eBIZ as a standard adopted in the SMEs dominated supply chain. As coordinator of the eBIZ initiative, Euratex pointed out the wide market opportunities to help companies’ digital integration and it provided insights of the next eBIZ support measures under consideration.

The press conference at the Premiere Vision premises was enabled and organized by UIT, the French national Textile Industry association, which had already supported the first Paris based eBIZ meeting on May.

Premiere Vision is a world leading fabric show taking place in Paris on 17-19 September 2013. No fewer than 700 weavers from 28 countries present collections in synergy with both the fashion calendar and the apparel industry demands.

eBIZ is the European public private initiative pursuing the use and greater interoperability of digital communication (e-Business) between companies of the Fashion industry, particularly the SMEs. Conceived within the eBSN action, eBIZ operates since 2008 thanks to the support of the European Commission, it is coordinated by Euratex and technically managed by ENEA.