For several years, the UAE has consistently topped regional rankings of entrepreneurship and innovation. Most recently, the 2017 Global Innovation Index ranked the UAE higher than any other Arab country and 35th globally, reinforcing its position as one of the world’s most innovative countries. The country is committed to promoting innovation and entrepreneurship as key drivers of the future economy and harnessing the power of digitization is seen as one of the most promising means to unlock new efficiencies.
GE, the only member on the original Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) that is still on the index, is no stranger to innovation. With a 125-year track record of creating leading global industrial technologies under its belt, innovation and problem-solving are in the organization’s DNA.
SourceNow is disrupting traditional business models in the complex industrial services sector in the Middle East. SourceNow is an innovative digital solution developed by a small startup team within GE’s Power Services Middle East & Africa (MEA) business based in Dubai, UAE.
The digital solution is a one-stop-shop for industrial services providers and buyers, particularly Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and a marketplace where buyers can float electronic requests for quotes to quality suppliers. “We are inspired by the entrepreneurial spirit within the UAE and our strong culture of innovation at GE. SourceNow is set out to change the way industrial services suppliers and customers do business in our region,” says Michelle Wu, CIO and VP of digital technology for GE’s Power Services business in MEA.
SourceNow drew upon GE’s industrial procurement and sourcing knowledge across the Middle East and Africa (MEA) for more than 110 years, and is developed on Predix* - GE’s platform for the Industrial Internet - purposely built to meet the scale, complexity, speed, and security requirements of industry.
Within a few weeks of launching SourceNow in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Egypt, there are over 480 registered industrial services users on the platform, offering more than 20 different categories of industrial services, such as welding and fabrication, machining, shop repairs, equipment rentals, manpower and much more. An organization in the UAE can register on SourceNow as a supplier providing services, a customer looking for services, or both. “Around the world, the list of digitally-enabled ideas disrupting traditional business models is growing larger. These ideas have one thing in common: they satisfy real market demands,” explains Wu.
“SourceNow provides a similar breakthrough by offering an innovative, intuitive and efficient solution that solves the challenge of sourcing highly-skilled and highly-specialized industrial services in large sectors such as power generation and oil & gas,” she said.Wu has the privilege to be among those leading the charge in the digital transformation of industries across the region.
“Every day, we experience numerous digital platforms, from consuming goods to ordering services. The business-to-consumer (B2C) digital sector has been very robust to fulfill demands. However, in the business-to-business (B2B) space, the digital experience has been slower to catch on, especially in the industrial services sector. The process of identifying the right people and service providers can require a significant investment in time and effort to accommodate the complexity of many industrial services requirements."
With a growing network of quality suppliers and potential customer review ratings, SourceNow can help SMEs access competitive pricing and efficiency in the procurement process. “SourceNow builds on our commitment to help industrial services suppliers and SMEs grow faster. By connecting them and giving them easy access to each other, the digital solution can support their business objectives and speed up their decision-making processes,” Wu adds.GE’s Power Services Middle East & Africa unit is looking to scale up SourceNow to operate in more markets and offer services across more industries, from power to aviation, rail, healthcare and more.
*Predix is a trademark of the General Electric Company.
Feature image via SourceNow website.