Legendary Investments announced on Wednesday that its investee company, Virtualstock, has partnered with artificial intelligence-based instant supplier payment decision company Previse to deliver a fully-integrated purchase-to-pay supply chain system with cash on delivery for suppliers in the UK.
The AIM-traded firm said the two British supply chain technology companies would enable clients to merge their accounts payable and procurement functions seamlessly, allowing suppliers to get cash-on-delivery.
Buyers would be able to manage their catalogues, contract pricing, inventory and purchases as well as track deliveries through Virtualstock's 'The Edge' platform, while also ensuring their suppliers were paid instantly with Previse's machine learning technology and network of readily available funding.
Virtualstock has a partnership with NHS Shared Business Services, with The Edge platform also used by retailers including Tesco, John Lewis and Argos.
Legendary said supply chains were becoming "ever more complex", with more products being moved faster.
That required seamless real-time data exchange between large organisations and their suppliers, such as that provided through The Edge.
Previse's artificial intelligence would utilise the "rich seam" of real-time data on The Edge platform to facilitate instant payment from participating buyers to their suppliers as soon as an invoice was issued.
With its ability to instantly and accurately score the risk level of each invoice, Previse's technology would also reduce the costs of back office administration for buyers by allowing them to focus on the invoices which were most likely to require human attention.
"Finally, the business to business purchasing landscape is beginning to look like the world of consumer payments that we all enjoy in our daily lives," said Previse chief product officer David Brown.
"Through this partnership, companies will be able to see what they've bought and where it is in real time, while suppliers will instantly receive payment for delivering their goods."
Brown said that was how transactions between businesses should be in the 21st century - fast and efficient from procurement to payment.
"Through the expert channelling and analysis of data which our two companies provide, that can now be a reality for businesses globally."
Andrew Mills, CEO and chairman at Virtualstock, said his company's aim was to enable frictionless commerce between B2B buyers and suppliers.
"When we came across Previse's unique model, we instantly saw the synergies with The Edge and the clear benefits for our clients.
"Now, for the first time, the buyers who use our platform can enable all their suppliers, even the smallest SME they work with, to be paid instantly," Mills explained.
"The combination of The Edge and Previse is a powerful and highly disruptive proposition, and will be a key partnership as we look to expand together into new markets over the coming years."
Zafar Karim, executive chairman at Legendary Investments, added that his firm was "delighted" at the development.
"Virtualstock's ability to provide seamless real-time data exchange between disparate systems has been and is being successfully applied in supply chains of the retail and health sectors.
"With this partnership with Previse, Virtualstock is connecting to the key, fast growing areas of artificial intelligence and fintech thereby further increasing the sector-wide applicability and value add of Virtualstock," Karim explained.
"The partnership will be key to opening up new markets for Virtualstock in the coming years."