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Customer Stories

Rich’s: Aligning spend management with business strategy and goals

Explore Rich’s journey with SAP

When global family-owned food company Rich Products Corporation (Rich’s) embarked on a digital procurement transformation journey to standardize disparate homegrown processes, it chose the SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing solution and SAP Business Network to support its efforts. Together these solutions help deliver spend management visibility, control, and compliance.

US$60 million

of indirect spend managed through SAP Ariba solutions.


documents transacting through SAP Business Network each year.


plants using standardized procure-to-pay processes.

A key component of our success was scoping the initial 18 months of the project to focus specifically on maintenance, repair, and operations and implementing the catalogs for major suppliers in that category.

Jay Maruso
Procurement Manager, Procure to Pay, Rich Products Corporation

The Challenge

Placing procurement operations at the center of innovation

Family-owned food company Rich Products Corporation (Rich’s) is dedicated to inspiring possibilities. From innovative products to hands-on expertise, Rich’s brings creative solutions to food industry professionals around the world, helping unlock new possibilities to captivate consumers.


In the wake of rapid growth and merger and acquisition activity, Rich’s was operating a large network of manufacturing plants with highly decentralized procurement processes. Lacking standardized procurement, purchasing, and invoicing policies and procedures as well as modern tools for its users, Rich’s was managing purchase requisitions directly in its SAP ERP application.


Looking to position its procurement operations at the center of innovation and productivity, Rich’s wanted to align spend decisions with its business strategy and goals. To achieve this aim, the company identified the need to consolidate, unify, and digitalize spend management processes in the cloud. The goal was to strengthen purchasing compliance and more finely control spend management.

We had a lot of homegrown processes. Each of our 29 plants had its own unique configuration of both resources and the processes they used for purchasing. Investing in SAP Ariba solutions and a major change management project allowed us to standardize procurement operations across the business.

Jay Maruso
Procurement Manager, Procure to Pay, Rich Products Corporation

The Solution

Shifting to a managed spend model for stronger compliance and control

Aligned with SAP’s cloud vision and existing investments in SAP ERP and SAP SuccessFactors Human Experience Management Suite (SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite), Rich’s extended its business technology landscape with intelligent spend management solutions from SAP.


The food company decided to implement the SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing solution to streamline procure-to-pay processes and take advantage of SAP Business Network to simplify transactions with suppliers. Rich’s also deployed the cloud integration gateway capability with SAP ERP.


Using SAP Business Network means that suppliers who transact with the company are doing so as part of a continuous and compliant process. By streamlining procure-to-pay processes and automating its purchasing lifecycle with SAP Ariba solutions, Rich’s can overcome the challenges associated with the previously high number of invoices that it received without purchase orders. This streamlining effort also enables Rich’s to offer its procurement team one centralized location to search for indirect goods and services. As Jay Maruso, procurement manager for procure-to-pay operations at Rich’s, points out, “Through the use of SAP Business Network and SAP Ariba solutions, we have a tightly integrated process and don’t bring any suppliers into buying and invoicing that are not also enabled on SAP Business Network.”

SAP is a crucial partner of ours, providing multiple points of engagement to help us in areas of technical, functional, and strategic capability and sharing key insights from experience with many thousands of customers.

Jay Maruso
Procurement Manager, Procure to Pay, Rich Products Corporation

The Result

Maximizing spend compliance with more spend and supplier insight

Since initially going live with SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing and the SAP Business Network Commerce Automation solution at one set of plants, Rich’s has now completed implementations at 29 plants nationwide, as well as at its distribution center. It has also adopted the software for its office supplies operations at the company’s world headquarters.


With the solutions in place, Maruso says that Rich’s has developed much stronger relationships with key suppliers and has experienced exceptional network adoption and growth, partnering with the services team from SAP Business Network to onboard suppliers. “We now have very close coordination with suppliers throughout the procure-to-pay process, and there is a marked improvement over the speed and efficiency of our transactions.”


In the first 18 months since going live, Rich’s enabled more than 800 suppliers on the business network and issued more than 18,000 purchase orders to those suppliers, accounting for $60 million in spend. “And offering the PunchOut feature to our users has been absolutely vital,” adds Maruso. “Previously, we had to transpose details of a partner service directly from a supplier’s catalog Web site. Now we can do this in under a minute.”


Using the cloud integration gateway capability, Rich’s has taken advantage of various APIs available through SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing to connect and share data from other SAP and third-party systems within its infrastructure. Maruso explains, “SAP SuccessFactors solutions comprise a vital partner system in our environment. We integrated the SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central solution with SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing to share HR data, allowing us to automate the processes for user provisioning and establishing user approval authority limits. So, we no longer have to do this manually. We also connect to Thomson Reuters’ ONESOURCE tax product platform. As Rich’s conducts a preorder tax assessment on every requisition, this gives us the ability to do things on the front end that we would typically have to do on the back end. Again, removing manual tasks saves our partner teams significant time and effort.”

The next step in our digital procurement transformation journey with SAP Ariba solutions and SAP Business Network is to expand the success that we’ve had in managing our spend in the maintenance, repair, and operations category to all the products and services we buy within our organization.

Jay Maruso
Procurement Manager, Procure to Pay, Rich Products Corporation

Future Plans

Rolling out more-robust controls for all purchasing activities

At Rich’s, SAP solutions continue to support the company’s long-term vision and deep community engagement around common social causes, assisting with proven strategic, technical, and functional capabilities.


The next step in the company’s procure-to-pay journey will be a focus on broadening the use of SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing and expanding SAP Business Network enablement for direct spend management beyond the maintenance, repair, and operations category. Rich’s now plans to target expenditure in other categories such as transportation, warehousing, marketing, and sales and expand the use of the solution globally.

SAP helps Rich’s run better

Key business outcomes and benefits

  • Centralized and streamlined procure-to-pay processes and automated the purchasing lifecycle
  • Significantly improved the speed and efficiency of transactions with suppliers
  • Integrated spend management with HR data, automating processes for user provisioning and approval authority limits
  • Eliminated manual tasks from preorder tax assessments on every requisition
  • Achieved strong user adoption and compliance, thanks to a comprehensive change management program

Featured solutions and services

  • SAP Ariba Buying and Invoicing automates the purchasing lifecycle and provides one place to search for indirect goods and services.
  • SAP Business Network enables collaboration with supply chain trading partners and provides visibility across supply chain processes.
  • SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central offers cloud-based HR information system software, automating HR workflows and intelligent services on a single global platform.

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