Orbia Wavin Customer Story

How Orbia Building & Infrastructure (Wavin) successfully added eCommerce to its growth pipeline to meet the increasing needs of buyers worldwide

Orbia’s Building and Infrastructure business Wavin is an innovative solutions provider for the global building and infrastructure industry. Backed by more than 60 years of product development experience, Orbia Wavin is advancing life around the world by building healthy, sustainable environments for global citizens. Whether it’s to improve the distribution of clean drinking water, to make sanitation accessible for everyone to create climate-resilient cities or to design comfortable living spaces, Orbia Wavin collaborates with municipal leaders, engineers, contractors and installers to help future-proof communities, buildings and homes.

Orbia Wavin has over 12,000 employees across approximately 65 production sites worldwide, serving over 80 countries through a global sales and distribution network.
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localized webshops
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turnover from digital channels in 2023
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months implementation for a first-time webshop
  • B2B
  • Manufacturing
  • New Project
  • EMEA

The Challenge

Founded in 1955, Orbia Building & Infrastructure (Wavin) embarked on a mission to combat pipe corrosion and water waste with the introduction of tailor-made plastic pressure pipes to deliver potable water. This innovation marked the start of a successful business that serves over 80 countries today and has thrived through highly personalized one-to-one interactions between salespeople and customers. 

Catering to a diverse B2B clientele, from distributors to wholesalers and merchants, Orbia Wavin started to digitize its commerce operations as part of a global expansion strategy. As a first step, the company hired a Digital Director and built a team. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the team was compelled to accelerate its eCommerce efforts to mitigate the impact of prolonged lockdowns, as well as align with evolving buyer expectations for online product discovery and purchasing. 

Because of the complexity of its products, business operations and buying/selling processes, Orbia Wavin sought a flexible and easy-to-implement eCommerce solution as the company embarked on commerce digitization for the first time. Adopting an eCommerce solution that would empower the manufacturer to scale and grow its digital capabilities as needed was also imperative. Moreover, Orbia Wavin required an adaptable commerce platform capable of integrating various platforms and processes inherited from numerous mergers and acquisitions over the years.

The Solution

As the company embarked on digitizing for the first time, it was paramount for Orbia Wavin to tap into the most modern commerce technology available today: commercetools Composable Commerce for B2B. For the manufacturer, initiating a pilot webshop in one of its biggest markets was crucial via a step-by-step implementation, a prerequisite that perfectly fits the inherently modular, easy-to-integrate and cloud-native nature of composable technology. 

As a first step into digital commerce, Orbia Wavin created a webshop catering to home improvement merchants, enabling this group to find products and solutions from potable water systems to indoor heating and cooling. This initial milestone took about eight months to complete, which included the digitization of product data and the webshop creation. Following this, the company rolled out 35 localized webshops to serve regional merchants across Europe, Latin America and APAC, delivering an average of 1.5 localized webshops per month over the course of two years. 

To achieve these milestones, the company digitized its extensive product catalog with commercetools’ APIs, creating one source of truth for all product information. Ensuring the standardization of product information was paramount for Orbia Wavin’s eCommerce success to facilitate seamless interfacing between the eCommerce platform and systems of record, encompassing seven ERP systems. Additionally, the manufacturer implemented a cart and checkout solution to optimize the purchasing experience. 

Orbia Wavin’s technology stack also incorporates Contentstack’s CMS, and they are currently in the process of implementing Akeneo’s PIM (product information management) system, with all of these components operating within a cloud-native infrastructure powered by Google Cloud. 

Boosting the company’s digital maturity with these initial milestones has proved the importance of eCommerce for a complex B2B business such as Orbia Wavin, and how it can be leveraged for additional target groups beyond merchants.

As we plan to have 60% of global sales being digital, Orbia Wavin is now poised to keep up with the pace of change thanks to composable commerce. From creating personalized journeys and integrating with a multitude of systems to rolling out eCommerce internationally, we now have the flexibility and scalability our business needs.
Sam Brands

Global Product Manager - Digital Ordering, Orbia Building & Infrastructure (Wavin)

Why it was a success

Since implementation, Orbia Wavin has made significant strides in digitizing core commerce capabilities to meet buyer expectations, offering a 24/7 self-service eCommerce and easy reordering process for their business customers. 

The flexibility and transparency provided by commercetools Composable Commerce for B2B now enable the company to visualize order information in real-time, facilitating a seamless post-order flow. Consequently, Orbia Wavin has witnessed continuous growth in revenue generated through digital channels, amassing a 9-digit turnover in 2023. Notably, the manufacturer generated these tremendous results with relatively low investment in development resources by engaging a system integrator and only two internal architects. 

Looking ahead, Orbia Wavin aims to expand its online presence beyond merchants and introduce new channels to the buyer experience. For example, the company is considering the adoption of conversational commerce via popular chat apps such as WhatsApp in Latin America, tapping into its existing OCR technology for automated order processing. Leveraging its existing relationship with Google, the company is also experimenting with Google AI tools to standardize and map product codes as a way to optimize the efficiency of digital channels in the near future.  

In a nutshell, equipped with a flexible, scalable, secure, and cost-effective composable platform, Orbia Wavin not only has the groundwork for efficient digital commerce but also possesses the capability to amaze buyers in the long term through personalized engagement beyond traditional sales representative-driven interactions.

commercetools features for Orbia Wavin

Products

Can easily add new products and variants, as well as manage pricing and tax across multiple countries.

Checkout

Streamlined cart and order processes for an optimized purchasing experience on the company’s webshop.

Orders

Complete transparency and visibility for all orders. Plus, an easy reordering flow is available for customers.

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