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MAJOR BUSINESS-TO-BUSINESS (B2B) BUSINESS MODELSE-DISTRIBUTORCompanies that supply products and services directly to individual businesses are e-distributors. W.W. Grainger, for example, is the largest distributor of maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) supplies. MRO supplies are thought of as indirect inputs to the production process-as opposed to direct inputs. In the past, Grainger relied on catalog sales and physical distribution centers in metropolitan areas. Its catalog of equipment went online in 1995 at, giving businesses access to more than 300,000 items. Company purchasing agents can search by type of product, such as motors, HVAC, or fluids, or by specific brand name.E-distributors are owned by one company seeking to serve many customers. However, as with exchanges (described on the next page), critical mass is a factor. With e-distributors, the more products and services a company makes available on its site, the more attractive that site is to potential customers. One-stop shopping is always preferable to having to visit numerous sites to locate a particular part or product.E-PROCUREMENTJust as e-distributors provide products to other companies, e-procurement firms create and sell access to digital electronic markets. Firms such as Ariba, for instance, have created software that helps large firms organize their procurement process by creating mini-digital markets for a single firm. Ariba creates custom integrated online catalogs (where su

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