Prakash Muthukrishnan

CTO, Purchasing Power

Supernova Award Category: 

Matrix Commerce

The Company: 

​​​​​​Purchasing power is a leading e-commerce employee purchase program offering consumer products and services as a voluntary benefit in the workplace. The program provides workers responsible access to thousands of consumer products, vacations and online education services through an easy and convenient payment plan. Purchasing Power strives to make paying for purchases stress- and hassle-free for their customers. The automatic payments and 12-month payment term empower customers to budget and avoid penalty fees and ballooning interest associated with other payment options. Purchasing Power is revolutionizing the e-commerce experience, giving customers access to a better life combined with a responsible way to buy.

The Problem: 

​​​​​Purchasing Power needed a robust and scalable omnichannel commerce platform to serve its expanding customer base and increasingly sophisticated business requirements. Purchasing Power also wished to enable self-service by business users, building competencies within business units. Because Purchasing Power is not a software company, they are not able to develop functionality as quickly as a software company might. As such, they selected a packaged solution that would allow them to focus on improving their business, as opposed to focusing on developing software themselves. In the past, each decision and system change had to be routed through the IT department, which kept each business unit reliant upon the IT department to accomplish any task. Purchasing Power needed each business unit to be able to work independently from the IT team, providing better and faster service to their customers.

The Solution: 

Purchasing Power deployed SAP Hybris Commerce solutions to provide an enhanced customer experience. Purchasing Power selected SAP Hybris because its commerce solution is a feature-rich, enterprise-class omnichannel commerce platform with an established track record, and therefore, is easily able to partner with a small and rapidly growing company like Purchasing Power. Additionally, Purchasing Power’s employees are able to deploy SAP Hybris’ scalable solution without the IT department’s involvement. Now, Purchasing Power can easily expand its product catalog and provide feature-rich omnichannel commerce capabilities, increasing site conversion and freeing up the business to better serve customers with compelling products, services and promotions.

The Results: 

Prior to working with SAP Hybris, Purchasing Power was unable to provide their customers with real-time inventory updates or notify them when products are out of stock, thus making it more difficult for them to provide a seamless customer experience. Now, customers not only have the visibility of products’ stock level, they can also create “wishlists” for future purchases.The business users relied heavily on IT for everything, from adding a new product category, a banner or content, thus making the them slow to react to increasing customer demands. Post Hybris Commerce implementation, Purchasing Power’s business has achieved scale and less reliance on IT. The functional capabilities in Hybris Commerce along with the ease with which it can be configured and customized has given way to innovative offerings such as a “ marketplace”, where products from third parties are offered for purchase through payroll deduction.


15 months after first deploying SAP Hybris Commerce, Purchasing Power has increased web site conversion by 34% through easier navigation, search and promotions. They were able to add to their product catalogue tenfold (now 55,000+ SKUs) through streamlined product content management, and increase time customers spend on the site by 49% by providing more engaging and rich content. Purchasing Power was also able to reduce call center orders by 60%, lessening the burden placed on call center staff through customer self-service capabilities. Additional materials that show Purchasing Power's results through the partnership with SAP Hybris can be found in the following videos: Purchasing Power achieves double digit revenue growth with best in class e-commerce platform; A Better Way to Buy. 

The Technology: 

Purchasing Power embarked on a two-stage implementation of Hybris Commerce. First, it went live with the product content management (PCM) component of Hybris in early 2013 and then followed it up with an implementation of the Hybris storefront and customer service cockpit in March 2014. The company is currently implementing SAP Hybris Commerce, SAP Hybris Marketing, and Cloud for Customer (C4C).

Disruptive Factor: 

In deploying SAP Hybris solutions, Purchasing Power has become a leader in customer experience. Catering to millennials, Purchasing Power has transformed the way consumers shop by enabling them to pay in installments over time. This method of payment provides consumers with the opportunity to make automated deductions from their paycheck, control spending based on their salary and tenure, provide transparency in pricing and receive their purchases upfront, when they need it.  By partnering with SAP Hybris, Purchasing Power is transforming the consumer buying process and enhancing financial stability for consumers from all backgrounds.

Shining Moment: 

Purchasing Power’s CTO, Prakash Muthukrishnan, spoke at SAPPHIRENOW 2016 in Orlando about how Purchasing Power is transforming into a data-driven business by employing strategies to capture data, gain deep insights, and translate those insights into action. [See the video of the presentation]. The Technology Association of Georgia (TAG) also named Purchasing Power as a Top 20 Finalist among its “Top 40 Most Innovative Technology Companies in Georgia.”

About Purchasing Power

Purchasing Power is one of the fastest-growing voluntary benefit companies in the industry, offering a leading employee purchase program for consumer products and services as well as providing financial tools and resources to improve employee financial wellness. Purchasing Power is available to millions of people, including Fortune 500s, associations and government agencies.