NL 06-2014


30.06.2014Read it in different language:

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e-Invoice trends in the World: key players governments, SMEs and operators

Every year, the Swiss experts at Billentis issue an annual report about e-invoicing's status in the world. This year’s “E-invoicing Report 2014” was circulated on June 17, 2014. Only 8% of all invoices worldwide are electronic, thus there is still tremendous potential.

Billentis points out that the key stakeholders or “game changers” in e-invoicing will be governments, SMEs and solution providers. Public sector requirements are the key to fast e-invoice adoption, since virtually all enterprises and private persons exchange documents with the public sector. With the EU Digital Agenda to mandate e-invoicing in the public sector by 2018 in all of Europe, the pressure on private enterprises is growing as well. Millions of SMEs need to find suitable solutions, which will lead to solution providers offering better solutions at affordable prices.

Bruno Koch, the author of the report, explains that e-invoicing projects should be easy to defend to management, as switching to e-invoices can result in savings of 60-80% compared to traditional paper-based processing and the average project payback period is only 6 months to 1.5 years.

Read more about e-invoicing diffusion rates in different countries,  onboarding your trade partners, building a business case for adopting e-invoices and much more interesting here:

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E-residency to raise Estonian population to 10 million

In 2014, Estonia is planning to introduce e-residency and give non-residents ID certificates with the functionality of Estonian ID card. This will allow them to start using Estonian digital services -  to open bank accounts and establish companies, for example - from anywhere on Earth.
Authorities have the ambitious goal to issue 10 million e-identities by 2025. The nation's private sector has already seen the potential: e-residency would attract entrepreneurs needing an investment account in the European Union, bring more customers to Estonian companies and more capital into the country's economy. Future e-residents will be charmed by the country's fully online tax system, and its highly-developed internet banking infrastructure. It is worth noting that any profit reinvested in Estonia is tax-free.

Being the first country to introduce e-residency will confirm Estonia’s reputation as one of the leading e-countries.

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Roll-out of Maxima’s new electronic 4-document supply process

Electronic Data Interchange became one of the hottest issues for the trade companies in Lithuania at the end of 2013 when Maxima, the country's biggest retail chain, announced its migration to EDI documents. Maxima decided that from the beginning, all four documents would be used: order, despatch advice, receive advice, and invoice.

The implementation of Maxima's 4-document system first engages its 100 biggest suppliers, and then continues step-by-step with the rest. Maxima is ready to connect suppliers both through EDI operators as well as directly.

In May, more than 50 representatives of Maxima's top suppliers attended a seminar hosted by Telema that focused on Maxima’s new 4 document supply process. Telema clarified the role of the EDI operator and presented several solutions that would help suppliers to comply with the retailer's requirements. Maxima described the new B2B process and provided answers surrounding several important issues. The benefits of electronic document exchange are obvious and the change of companies' business processes justified.

Starting 2014, renewals of trade agreements with Maxima will include the 4-document EDI requirement. Although Maxima allows a reasonable 12 months transition time from paper to EDI, it is strongly advised to start the project as soon as possible.

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Telema EDI network acquires new members in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania

In the first half of 2014 Telema grew and tightened its customer network. Retailers maintain the leading role in transition to e-documents, involving many of their suppliers.

In Lithuania, two new retail chains joined - the 43-shop Gulbelė chain began exchanging documents via Telema in March, and Fresh Market, Lithuania's newest and fastest-growing retailer, was added in June. Also, the restaurant chains Azijos skoniai UAB (Čili Kinija), Gamtos virtuvė UAB (Čili kaimas, Forest), and Tokyo UAB (Soya) are now benefitting from EDI connections through Telema. New suppliers are being connected through the extensive Maxima EDI project.

In Estonia, the new retailer Kauper began using Telema services, ABC Supermarkets took final steps towards a fully integrated EDI connection, and one of the biggest retailers, Selver, conducted a major software change to enable even smoother communication. On the supplier side, two large wholesalers, Eugesta and Reaton, enhanced their EDI services with the help of Telema.

In Latvia, 5 new suppliers joined the Telema network to exchange their documents electronically with major retailers Rimi, TOP!, and Prisma. Electronic document volume grew steadily for all the retailers.

In parallel to the FMCG sector, the DIY sector is moving towards EDI. In the beginning of 2014, the development has been fastest in Latvia, where one of the most popular construction material retailers, T/N Kurši (14 shops), is now ready to start exchanging electronic orders and  invoices with suppliers. Thirteen connections, among those Caparol Baltic and Balteco,  were activated during the first half of the year, and many more are in the process of joining.

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Polish retailer Biedronka's 2,400 shops connected to Žemaitijos Pienas

In June 2014, Telema connected the first Lithuanian supplier to the biggest Polish retailer Biedronka, who has more than 2,400 shops in Poland. This was achieved through a roaming agreement with Polish EDI operator Comarch. The supplier in the case is the Lithuanian dairy Žemaitijos Pienas, one of the largest milk processors in Lithuania. Founded a century ago, the company today produces over 200 different dairy products, including a wide assortment of cheeses. Žemaitijos Pienas has  intensive export volumes mainly to Europe, Russia, and even Asia.

Telema has 11 roaming contracts with EDI operators providing services in a total of 30 countries, allowing Telema network members access to more than a million international trade partners.

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Telema monthly volume surpasses 1,000,000 EDI documents

The number of electronic documents exchanged via the Telema network exceeded 1,000,000 in June 2014. Document volume has been growing steadily and reached all time high in June. Today, the monthly traffic of electronic documents in the Telema EDI system is over 10 times greater than it used to be during one whole year a decade ago.

“Reaching one million documents a month is a milestone, but the growth does not stop there,” says Hele Hammer, CEO of Telema. “We are glad that Baltic retailers and suppliers have understood the benefits of electronic data interchange and continue to increase the share of EDI documents in their operations.”

EDI documents are most widely used in the FMCG sector. New retail sectors, such as DIY are also contributing significantly to the EDI expansion. Telema transfers about 20 different document types of which e-invoice and e-order are the most common.

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Telema EDI services now used in Ireland and Ukraine

In March 2014, Telema established an EDI connection for Purity Laboratories Ltd., a distributor of dental hygiene products in Ireland. In May 2014, an EDI connection was established to Chumak JSC, one of the biggest food producers in Ukraine. With the addition of these two clients, Telema now operates electronic data interchange for customers in 14 countries.

Both companies are suppliers for the retail chain Rimi and first started cooperation with Rimi stores in Lithuania. The companies receive electronic orders from Rimi and issue EDI invoices preferred by the retailer.

Baltic retailers are keen on using EDI as it simplifies supply processes and ensures better data quality resulting in lower costs. As the 4-document supply model is gaining popularity, new document types, such as receive advice are growing in volume.

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New functionalities of Telema Service Web

In the first half of 2014, Telema Service Web has been improved with many new functionalities  to make document exchange even more accurate:

  • In January, the functionality to delete rows on documents was added. This is useful with invoices, for example. Suppliers using the WebSupplier service can create invoices by converting the orders.  The new functionality allows users to remove from the invoice the rows that were automatically copied from the base document (order) but not needed.
  • Starting in March 2014, users  of Telema Service Web can create multiple invoices based on one order. The possibility to create multiple invoices is handy when it is necessary to divide a single invoice into smaller invoices, or if an incorrect invoice needs to be replaced with a new one. All invoices will have unique numbers, but still refer to the same order they were originally based on.
  • In April, creating credit invoices in Telema Service Web was added to the functionality of creating regular invoices. On credit invoices, all invoiced quantities are now automatically negative. Users can create multiple debit and/or credit invoices referring to one specific order.
  • Also since April 2014, data for multiple bank accounts can be added by users with administrator rights. Creating and modifying bank data can be done under the heading “Bank Info” in company/branch section.

All Telema clients are welcome to explore the new functionalities by logging on to Telema Service Web. For more information please contact Product Manager Triinu Himma,

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Telema MMT - mobile EDI on the rise

During 2014, Telema MMT has been more widely used than ever, reaching an all-time peak in May : 247 active sales agents working daily with Telema MMT. Several of the new users are additional salespeople employed by our already existing customers. However, the growth could not have been reached without newcomers – companies who have discarded their old solutions and started to use Telema MMT. Some examples of newbies from recent months are: Valio Eesti AS (EST) started with six agents in February, Lincona (EST) joined in April. Jungent, Premia and Nordic Cosmetics are expanding the use of the Telema MMT solution, with the latter adding six more agents in April.
Altogether, 31 companies’ sales teams are currently using Telema MMT. The application is available in 5 languages: Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, English and Finnish. Telema is constantly improving MMT with suggestions coming directly from our clients. Should a user experience any difficulties, the Telema helpdesk and a dedicated MMT product manager are ready to assist.
Telema MMT is a software designed for sales agents who travel and visit customers in person. The solution enables the customer to collect orders, evaluate on-shelf-availability situation in stores and gather other valuable market data. All information is automatically imported into a company’s ERP system, so there is no need for manual re-entering. MMT makes order processing faster, reduces possible mistakes, allows more time for customer handling, smooths warehouse working processes and delivers essential information for better decisions.

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Need to reduce and avoid OOS? - VMI is the solution

In February 2014, there was a study conducted by Dive Estonia that observed out-of-stock (OOS) situations in 30 Estonian FMCG retail stores. The study registered 1,088 OOS situations in total, the most extreme case 313 missing product references in one shop alone - all that during the peak sales period around 17:30 hours, when people shop for dinner.

Participants in the supply chain earn money only when the end consumer buys the final product. Thus, all members are also equally responsible for ensuring availability of final products at the lowest possible costs. To meet the challenges and solve availability problems supply chain partners must cooperate closely.

Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) is one of the best-known and most effective replenishment strategies facilitating supply chain cooperation and helping to avoid OOS. VMI begins by sharing retailers’ sales- and stock balance information with suppliers. Daily sales information represents consumer demand for the products. Based on this info, a supplier can quickly react to changes and initiate replenishment of goods before an OOS situation occurs.

In the Telema network there are over 1,100 shops technically able and willing to share POS information with their suppliers. Suppliers interested in supply chain visibility and VMI are more than welcome to explore this option.
To learn more about VMI, please contact Sven Uustalu, VMI product manager,

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Why use self-service in Telema Service Web?

The two most important advantages of using Telema Service Web for support issues are quicker answers and security:
1. Quick answers from document log
  • Where are the orders?: “It's already 2 p.m., and we haven't received any orders. Usually we receive them by 10 a.m.!”
    To find out if an order has been sent to you, log into Telema self-service and check your list of documents. In case the order you are looking for is not listed in Telema Service Web, then it has not been sent by your customer yet.  You need to contact your customer to find out further details.
  • Date of orders: “When did my customer send me their last order?”
    Just like with the previous question, the log of incoming and outgoing documents will give you this answer in minutes.
  • Are we connected?: “Could you please tell us if we can send invoices to these partners? Are we connected in Telema?”
    Telema Service Web provides a convenient list of all your company’s active partners with whom you can exchange documents. Additionally, there is an overview of new potential partners that have joined Telema recently.

2.Secure data transfer
By logging in to Telema Service Web with your personal credentials your information is sent through secure channel. What would be the consequences if sensitive information was compromised by someone hacking into your e-mail account or eavesdropping on your phone conversations?

At Telema we are committed to defending the security of our customers’ business information, therefore we strongly recommend that all requests are submitted securely through Telema Service Web. For example, requests related to Telema Service Web user permits are processed by Telema only when received from the client’s Admin User through Telema Service Web.

The transmission of requests is easy and quick:
- your contact info is known to the system, no additional filling needed;
- you do not have to search for e-mail address or a contact person’s phone number;
- requests are recorded and registered automatically and accurately;
- you receive a confirmation of your inquiry being received.

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Enhanced data validation and clear notifications from Telema EDI System

Since June 2014, Telema customers have likely noticed new notification messages sent by Telema EDI System, informing about received or delivered documents. The system also notifies the user if a sent document does not meet the requirements set by the receiver, and informs what errors to correct before resending.

Errors can lie either in the data format or in the data itself. Data format errors (misplaced information in the data file) can easily be eliminated by using the testing tool, Telema eDoc validator, on the Telema website. If the error is in the data itself (for example, a wrong price or product code, incorrect reference, calculation errors) it cannot be determined automatically by the system and will require clarification by both parties.

In order to avoid mistakes it is always good to:
- maintain up-to-date product databases (GTIN codes, correct units)
- keep pricelists up to date
- refresh your partner data at the EDI operator.

Advanced validation and matching functions of Telema EDI System discover most mistakes, thus preventing errors in a recipient's IT-system or business processes. Correction of faults often requires human involvement (phone calls, e-mail conversations) wasting resources and generating hidden costs. Telema EDI System reduces these costs through rigid data quality control and proper user communication.

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New Telema eDoc version 2.8.4

In April 2014, another Telema eDoc release was published. Version 2.8.4 carries significant updates for meeting the SEPA requirements and client specifications.

The latest changes to eDoc were made to fully support SEPA requirements. Account number fields in version 2.8.4 are updated to recognize IBAN numbers. Responding to client requests, several new fields connected to validity date and discounts rates were also added to the newest version. Now it is possible to distinguish between the two validity terms: "best before" and "valid until", that both have significant meaning for traders in the FMCG sector.

Complete Telema eDoc specification and the change log can be viewed at:

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Fast and easy EDI access through new Telema Certified Partners

Telema cooperates with business software providers to make EDI connectivity easier and faster for both our current and potential customers. Telema Certified Partners are IT support companies who have implemented a standardized Telema EDI Module into the business software they provide and with whom Telema has signed a cooperation agreement specifying end customer activation terms – time, cost and process flow.

In the first part of 2014, our main focus has been developing partnerships in Latvia and Lithuania. New Telema Certified Partner certificates were issued in April to the business software Directo support companies Directo SIA in Latvia and  Directo UAB in Lithuania. Business software Finvalda support company Finansų valdymo sistemos UAB in Lithuania became certified in May.  

Several other IT companies are in the process of incorporating the Telema EDI Module into their business software. Respective cooperation agreements have been signed with Apskaitos asistentė UAB  in Lithuania for the software Asistente, and Assako Smart SIA in Latvia for the software WinLats. Negotiations to sign cooperation agreements are going on with approximately 10 additional software providers in the Baltic countries.

The Telema EDI connection through Certified Partners' software is activated free of charge by Telema, and costs to join are minimal on the Telema Certified Partners’ side as well – in much software, Telema EDI Module activation is free. Read more about Certified Partners’ activation terms.

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Exchange electronic documents with over 1,000,000 companies

Did you know that through Telema companies can exchange electronic documents with more than one million companies across Europe? It is made possible through Telema roaming partnerships with other leading European EDI operators. Currently Telema has roaming agreements with these EDI operators in Europe: Comarch, Editel Austria, Itella Finland, Itella Sweden, GXS, OpusCapita Estonia, Tieto, Basware, and Omniva.

EDI documents can be exchanged with partners in all the countries where our partners operate. This benefit has been used already by many Telema customers who have improved their international business with EDI benefits. The most notable case is the connection between Polish retailer Biedronka and dairy Žemaitijos Pienas, who were connected through Telema and Comarch roaming agreement in June 2014. Read more here.

If you are interested in international EDI connections, please let us know by sending a request through Telema Service Web.

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Promoting paperless trading processes and innovative ideas

In 2014, Telema continues spreading the idea of paperless processes. Our traditional morning seminars explaining the facets of EDI were held in March in Liepaja, Vilnius seminars were held in March and May, and in Riga the events happened in February and June. Special events targeted at IT partners involved guest speakers from GS1 and Directo.

For the first time Telema partnered with LIKTA in Latvia to support organization of e-skills week in Latvia. In Lithuania, on March 4th Telema quiz shared information about electronic document interchange with the participants of the country’s largest Trade Forum Lithuania. In May, Telema again supported TEDx Tallinn, helping to spread innovative ideas.

Our good cooperation with universities and public sector organizations has resulted in a variety of lectures, seminars and conferences on the topic of paperless processes in the supply chain. Telema was among the initiators of the first Pärnu Supply Chain Conference held in Pärnu in March 2014. Our representatives carried out the classical MIT Beer Game illustrating advantages of the pull strategy over push strategy.

Telema has performed at several trade and logistics seminars organized by the Estonian business daily, Äripäev. In January, our CEO, Hele Hammer, shared methodologies for raising service levels by minimizing out of stock, and e-invoicing implementation best practices were presented in May.

This spring, our CEO, Hele Hammer, supervised the masters theses of 7 Supply Chain Management master studentsfrom the  Tallinn University of Technology. These theses were successfully defended in June 2014. Two of the works were on the topic of Vendor Managed Inventory, one on Sales and Operations Planning, two on EDI in Supply Chain, one on Performance Measurement in Supply Chain, and one on Purchasing Management. She also supervised a masters student at the Estonian Business School who defended her thesis on Supply Chain Finance.

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"Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success." - Henry Ford
In June, we were glad to welcome back our Junior System Administrator, RISTO SIITAN, who fulfilled his duty by serving 11 months in the Estonian Armed Forces.

We can proudly note that Telema’s reputation of being a good employer is spreading, and specialists seem to be queuing up to get hired. In May, we opened our doors to all those potential candidates and organized a thorough info day. Interested people came all the way from Lithuania, not to mention from Estonia. The get acquainted day served its purpose for both parties - some preliminary agreements were already made; some are still under consideration. We will be introducing our new colleagues in the next newsletter.

A good employer also cares for the working environment - Telema Latvia moved to new spacious offices at the end of May, and you may visit them (without parking problems!) at Katlakalna 11c in Riga.

Telema people have always been keen on continuing education. In June 2014, two of our Telema colleagues concluded their studies in Tallinn University of Technology and were among the first in Estonia to receive a master’s degree in Supply Chain Management. Congratulations to Telema IT Project Manager RAUL SILDE and Product Manager SVEN UUSTALU!
Telema´s Sales and Marketing Assistant DELERIN URBUS studies graphic design and her business plan for innovative furniture was named top of class.

To keep up the good work and studies, one must balance it with active recreation. This year our team discovered the secret of table tennis! Not only did we hold the first internal Telema Table Tennis Competition, but we also competed with other companies. On April 5th, Telema participated in the first Estonian Table Tennology Tournament, held for startups and embassies, with three teams. The best of our teams was placed 9th out of a total 38 teams.

Those not so much into sports express themselves through music. Our Developer RAUL TÕNISTE is a member of a  mandolin orchestra, and System Administrator MARGUS LIIV has a singing voice wanted by several choirs.

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 2012 HY

2013 HY

2014  HY

Annual Change


    850   1,000
  2,900   3,1003,200

E-supply links*





Documents, thousands





*E-supply link is the connection between one supplier and one delivery address (shop)

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