Antares Systems: The Bedrock of E-procurement Solution Providers

Antares Systems | The Bedrock of E-procurement Solution Providers | The Enterprise World

Since the past decade, procurement has evolved to become more strategic and integrated product along with other business functions. The e-procurement of goods, in particular, has transformed the way businesses function. E-procurement is important as it helps businesses with advanced analytics, user experience and collaboration, cybersecurity measures, and dividing similar business works into a single category to achieve economies of scale that help to negotiate better. As an e-procurement solution provider company, Antares Systems is well aware of these elements. 

With its headquarters in Bangalore, Antares Systems started its journey in 1997 as a software development firm. It currently maintains offices in major cities in India. The company started under the brand name ‘Tenderwizard’, providing e-governance products in the form of e-tendering and e-auction. Since then, it has seen steady growth ever since by launching diversified products at standard intervals in sectors like material management, online contract management, e-Payment and digital security components.

With an enviable list of clientele of the highest regard and reputation throughout India, it provides support to implement the transition from traditional tendering to electronic tendering and auctioning. The company aims to get government organizations to adopt effective ways to conduct procurement activities thereby improving their bottom lines and profit margins. 

Antares provides organizations with a fool-proof TENDERWIZARD procurement system and helps them maintain high levels of transparency, clarity, and efficiency in their purchase functions. It maintains various certifications and standards like ISO 9001, 2700I, and CMMI Level 5 standards. Moreover, it has implemented several initiatives as part of the product enhancements throughout these years. The company’s bidding module e-AuctionWizard supports multi-line auctions, auto bidding, server time synchronization, value based bidding, rank bidding, and various advanced features.      

Bouquet of Exemplary Services

The software services offered by Antares Systems continuously evolve to comply with statutory guidelines and certifications from competent authorities. They incorporate suitable functionalities, customizations with open-source technologies, and facilitate the transition from manual processes to digital platforms for procurement decisions. Users are provided bouquet of modules within a common portal, ensuring adherence to defined process flows for easy access, audits, and timely decisions, ultimately improving client relationships

  • TenderWizard – Web-based end-to-end Procurement: TenderWizard is a robust, feature-rich, and end-to-end solution for e-tendering and e-procurement. Supports One / Two / Three Cover e-Tender system for Goods, Works and Services. User configurable work flow and feature flags for every functionality make it simple for the user department to customize and modify the application to suit any requirement, be it simple or complex.
  • Electronic Auction: E-Auction is developed for comprehensive market research and careful analysis of intricacies involved in the auctioning of plots, commodities, sites, shops, scrap, etc. Their Forward Auction and Reverse Auction modules have found to be most preferred by leading nationalized banks in India like State Bank of India, Canara Bank, Indian Bank and LIC.
  • CMS: A Contract Management System (CMS) manages the production and management of contracts, Service Level Agreements (SLA), and Procurement Master Agreements. The product covers post-tender procurement activities for works and contracts. 
  • E-Gruha: Automated System for Allotment of residential accommodation to employees and staff for government and private sector.
  • Employees can apply for new house allotment
  • Check the housing availability under various categories and locations
  • Priority request for select employee category 
  • Mark the allotment House for Vacate / give-up
  • Acceptance and retention of the Allotted house 
  • Retention of Accommodation
  • Regularization of Accommodation
  • Online Payment Gateway Solutions: Antares’ latest product offering provides a platform for organizations to collect and manage the payment instruments for their services to include card payments, UPI, NEFT, RTGS, Net Banking and Scan QR payments starting from collection, refund and settlement.
  • E-Governance Solutions: The strategic objective of any e-Governance/e-Municipality is to support and simplify governance for all parties – government, citizens, and businesses. The use of ICTs can connect all three parties and support processes and activities. 
  • Digital Signature Certificates: Antares is a Licensed Registration Authority / LRA of ID Sign, eMudra and Capricorn for the issuance of Digital Signature Certificates all over India. Being one of the leading IT services-oriented companies, we offer personalized, timely, and efficient services for obtaining your Digital Signature Certificates (DSC).
  • Customized solutions for APIs to do the KYC validations with government bodies like Aadhar, PAN, GST, etc.,
  • Broadcasting Services through social platforms like WhatsApp, SMS & Emails, etc. 

Identifying Gaps in the Industry

Antares Systems faced many obstacles while imparting e-procurement services to Government offices in India. These challenges involved the lack of knowledge among government officials about such a product, less access to IoT, limited KYC certifications, cultural differences, and resistance to adapt to change by the staff. The users also reported facing complexities on the user interfaces. The shift to online mode was planned to overcome some of these challenges:

  • Manual Processes
  • Lack of Standardization
  • Limited Supplier Collaboration
  • Time Delays
  • Transparency and Visibility
  • Cost Inefficiencies

USP of Antares Systems 

  1. User-friendly interface and accessibility: Antares Systems has a user-friendly and intuitive interface that sets the e-procurement platform apart from others. Its products offer accessibility features that are compatible with various devices and platforms that enhance the overall usability of the solutions provided. 
  2. Customization and Scalability: The company aims to provide a highly customizable solution that allows organizations to tailor the e-procurement platform to their specific needs and workflows. The majority of the functionalities in the e-procurement product are offered on the U-PROC platform. This platform allows the user to decide their templates, fields, process flow, and terminologies. 
  3. Free of Cost Services: The service was offered as a ‘Pay Per Use’ model wherein the service was provided on demand. There are no upfront costs to department agencies towards infrastructure and IT data centre server setup. The operating cost is recovered from the vendor community and hence, there is no capital expenditure from the buyer department. 

Nation’s Pride & Cross-Border Players

The e-procurement product Tenderwizard developed by Antares Systems has completed the SCAMPI (Standard CMMI Appraisal Method for Customer Testimonials and Recognitions). The company has helped a health department in the Government of Malaysia to achieve considerable cost-saving and time benefits. University Putra Malaysia UPM, a leading research university in Malaysia, has been extensively using the Tenderwizard system through the company’s business partner TenderPintar, and has enjoyed huge benefits. 

As quoted by the UPM Department:

“We have experienced 40% efficiency and improvement upon implementation of Tender Wizard in our Tendering and procurement processes. We are excited as this reflects positively on the optimization performance of UPM as a public health care provider in Malaysia.”- Prof Dr.Mohd Rosian Sulaiman, Vice Chancellor, UPM, Gov. of Malaysia

Various departments in the Indian Government Sector have largely benefitted from the products/services of Antares Systems. The finance departments, power sector organizations, and the defence departments i.e. The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has adopted the Tenderwizard system for all its works and goods procurement. ISRO’s teams from finance, vigilance, and purchase have shown trust in the confidentiality of the Tenderwizard system. 

As quoted by the ISRO Department 

“This is to state that the Indian Space Research Organization -ISRO, Dept. of Space has adopted TENDER WIZARD electronic tendering systems for works contracts of various construction projects/Maintenance works across the country as an Application Service Provider (ASP). The service and implementation support extended by TENDER WIZARD is very good.”- Director, CEPO, ISRO. 

Team and Culture at Antares Systems

Antares Systems maintains a positive work environment via team-building activities. It helps to maintain strong relationships among team members and strengthens motivation in the group. It brings in open and transparent communication. By doing so, all team members are in line with the company’s goals and ensure their work contributes to the overall success of the company. 

The sales team members enjoy autonomy in their roles. They have the benefit of making decisions and taking ownership of their work. A culture of constructive feedback and frequent checks for any support regarding performance is ensured. The HR department consistently values team members’ achievements by offering bonuses and incentives to keep the employee’s morale boosted. 

Shouldering Responsibilities with a Vision

Antares Systems is spearheaded by its CEO, Mr. B.V. Suresh Kumar. An alumnus of IISC Bangalore, he is a thorough software architect and visionary in the IT industry with more than 30 years of experience in this field in India as well as abroad. 

He ensures the alignment of all activities is in tune with the company’s vision and strategy. Mr. Kumar is also keenly involved in Tenderwizard product design and re-engineering methods to improvise the solution to meet the ever-changing customer requirements. With a holistic view, he keeps in mind the future needs and expectations. The ever-evolving technologies like Artificial Intelligence and blockchain development are adopted in the organization under his guidance and with a team of technical experts and developers. 

Significant Achievements

With his dedicated team, Mr. Kumar has developed many innovative B2B and B2C products for the global markets. TENDERWIZARD, one of the most popular among them, is used for tendering and auctioning.  In 2002, the product was launched in the Indian market with a handful of buyers. With a struggle of 5 years, Mr. Kumar and his team pushed the concept to the Government of Karnataka and it became the first pioneering e-TENDER system in the country. He is also passionate about providing education and training to the underprivileged. 

He nurtured the Hongirana School of Excellence as a Founder, President and Mentor. Mr Suresh Kumar is also a founder  trustee for Usha Kirana, an environment and nature conservation organization which is actively engaged in nature, forest, and wildlife conservation work in Sagara landscape, nestled in Western Ghats of Karnataka which is recognized as one of the hottest hot-spot of biodiversity around the world. Usha Kirana gives reverence to Flora and Fauna and is focussed on developing nature-based projects for human subsistence.

We also actively engage with school children, public, media people and other partners to raise awareness about biodiversity conservation. He is supported by a team of dedicated and committed Management and Staff headed by Mrs. Shobha Somayaji for the venture. The School is chosen under the Government of India’s ambitious Atal Tinkering Lab under NITI AAYOG out of 257 schools. The school was also a part of the INDO – Russian summit held in New Delhi in October 2018.

Faculty members from the school had been selected to meet Shri Narendra Modi, Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, and Mr. Vladimir Putin, President of Russia to explain the merits of the project. 

Besides this, Antares Systems is also known as “The Best E-procurement Solution Providers.” This title itself depicts the company’s expertise in the field of e-procurement. This recognition helps the company to gain a competitive advantage and stand out in the market. This will attract more potential clients for the company. It builds trust among other clients. This acknowledgment opens up new opportunities for business growth. It will lead to increased participation in industry events or collaborations, increased visibility, and partnerships. 

Being in Line with the Trends

Antares Systems has sources to keep itself updated about recent developments. The company has subscribed to various innovation magazines, journals, and industry-specific publications and distributes them among employees too. Subscriptions to newsletters and blogs help the team to be informed about new features, technologies, and advancements in e-procurement tools. The company regularly nominates staff to attend relevant conferences, seminars, and webinars. It helps to network with professionals and gain insights from experts in the field. 

A regular study of market research reports is encouraged for business managers to gain knowledge about comprehensive insights, market dynamics, growth areas, and future predictions. The social media presence is an evolving trend at Antares. The team will follow up on relevant hashtags and accounts on social media platforms for real-time updates that will help Tenderwizard to position itself in the government space. 

Expansion Plans

Antares Systems aims to conduct in-depth market research to identify trends, customer needs, and potential opportunities. The company plans to invest in advanced technologies to enhance the e-procurement platform. This involves incorporating artificial intelligence, machine learning, blockchain, or other cutting-edge technologies to improve efficiency. The company plans to work on improving the user experience of the platform. To contribute to customer satisfaction, it aims to streamline processes, simplify interfaces, and ensure a user-friendly experience. 

Given the sensitivity of procurement data, Antares will continue to focus on continually improving data security measures to stay abreast of relevant regulation and ensure compliance with industry standards. Antares has had a large market base in Malaysia for the past 10 years. More than 20 government bodies are using the Tenderwizard product under the brand name TENDERPINTAR. The Income Tax Department LHDNM is the largest customer of its product. As a result, the company is considering expanding its e-procurement offerings to new geographic regions.

Pearls of Wisdom for Business Leaders

“Invest in user-friendly eProcurement systems and ensure that your team is well-trained in using them. A seamless user experience not only increases adoption but also reduces the chances of errors and inefficiencies. Provide comprehensive training to your employees on how to navigate the eProcurement platform, make purchases, and take advantage of its features. This can significantly enhance overall productivity and contribute to the success of your procurement processes.”

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