Ariba buys Goodex

Four German venture capital firms have realised their investment in Goodex, a Hamburg-based company that provides online sourcing technology, support and auction services for reverse auctions in the business-to-business sector. Nasdaq-listed Ariba of the US has acquired the business for an undisclosed price.

The original investors in Goodex were two Hamburg-based firms, Dr Neuhaus Techno Nord, the venture capital firm founded by Dr Gottfried Neuhaus, and HASPA Beteiligungsgesellschaft für den Mittelstand (Haspa BGM), the private equity subsidiary of the Hamburger Sparkasse.

They committed a first round of financing to establish the company in December 1999. Goodex was founded by a group of sourcing leaders at General Electric and Bayer who developed software functionality tailor-made to the requirements of professional sourcing. 3i was also an early investor in the company, which received a total of four VC rounds.

In 2000 Goodex merged with Xmarket, a business-to-business exchange backed by Deutsche Telekom’s venture arm, T-Venture, and Bonn-Innova, a regional fund. The enlarged company received €1.75 million of further financing in December 2001 from the four German investors.

Since going live in March 2000 Goodex has processed a transaction volume of €1.5 billion, with an average volume of more than €2.4 million per auction. It is the largest European service and technology provider for online reverse auctions, RFQ’s and sourcing consultancy. The company operates from 13 locations in nine European countries, Asia and the US.

Software producer Ariba, which has a market capitalisation of around $776 million, hopes the acquisition of Goodex will help it penetrate the European market more rapidly. Ariba is the market leading Enterprise Spend Management solutions provider.